And even experimental studies have their limits, in order that we’re forced to develop an armamentarium of strategies, displayed in this handbook, for dragging causal results out of nature and for explaining political phenomena. We hope that our operating instance on American political science has shown that at least some analysis problems (and perhaps all of them) can benefit from using each quantitative and qualitative methods. We find that quantitative methods present some necessary insights concerning the measurement and scope of phenomena and in regards to the linkages amongst variables, however quantitative methods are often maddeningly opaque with respect to the exact causal mechanisms that link our variables. Qualitative methods fill in a few of these darkish corners, however they generally result in worries concerning the possibility that we have simply stumbled throughout an idiosyncratic causal path.
There was a palpable sense that statistical methods may uncover necessary causal truths … Read More