Technique Trumps Relevance: The Professionalization of Political Science and the Marginalization of Security Studies

  title={Technique Trumps Relevance: The Professionalization of Political Science and the Marginalization of Security Studies},
  author={Michael C. Desch},
  journal={Perspectives on Politics},
  pages={377 - 393}
  • M. Desch
  • Published 1 June 2015
  • Political Science
  • Perspectives on Politics
I explain here the disconnect between our discipline's self-image as balancing rigor with relevance with the reality of how we actually conduct our scholarship most of the time. To do so, I account for variation in social scientists' willingness to engage in policy-relevant scholarship over time. My theory is that social science, at least as it has been practiced in the United States since the early twentieth century, has tried to balance two impulses: To be a rigorous science and a relevant… 

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