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Big Data and historical social science

Bearman, Peter Shawn

‘‘Big Data’’ can revolutionize historical social science if it arises from substantively important contexts and is oriented towards answering substantively important questions. Such data may be especially important for answering previously largely intractable questions about the timing and sequencing of events, and of event boundaries. That said, ‘‘Big Data’’ makes no difference for social scientists and historians whose accounts rest on narrative sentences. Since such accounts are the norm, the effects of Big Data on the practice of historical social science may be more limited than one might wish.

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Title
Big Data & Society
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1177/2053951715612497

More About This Work

Academic Units
Interdisciplinary Center for Innovative Theory and Empirics
Sociology
Published Here
April 23, 2019

Notes

Keywords: Big Data, historical social science