The Public Value of the Social Sciences: An Interpretive Essay

Brewer, J. D. (2013). The public value of the social sciences: An interpretive essay. Bloomsbury.


In The Public Value of the Social Sciences, the social sciences are under threat from two main sources. One is external, reflected in a global university crisis that imposes the marketization of higher education on the ancient practice of scholarship. The other, internal threat is social science’s withdrawal from publicly–engaged teaching and research into the protective bunker of disciplinarity. In articulating a vision for the public role of social science in the twenty-first century, John Brewer argues that these threats also constitute an opportunity for a new public social science to emerge, confident in its public value and fully engaged with the future of humanity in its teaching, research and civic responsibilities, while also remaining committed to science.

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