I can't believe it's not measurement: the legacy of operationism in social-scientific uses of numbers
What is called measurement in human sciences such as sociology is different from other usesof the term, embracing not only quantification in the strict sense, but also all kinds of scaling,ranking and even classification per se. This paper considers such habits as a legacy of theÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂ¿OperationalÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂÃÂ¿ measurement theory of S. S. Stevens, wherein science meant measurement, butconcepts (e.g., measurement) meant whatever we all agreed they did. Coupled with a broadercultural tendency to privilege mind over matter, this has led to great efforts to quantify theintangible, possibly at the expense of sociologically-relevant material factors which betterlend themselves to it.
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