Social science research is undermined when political bias, assumptions suppress discussion: Opinion


Social science is being undermined by political bias that causes researchers to turn a blind eye to basic assumptions, writes Martyn Hammersley for Times Higher Ed. Hammersley asserts that work that goes against particular political assumptions is often ignored and dismissed, which he argues allows academics to take things for granted that should be questioned and further undermines research quality by encouraging “illegitimate attempts” to turn academic research into a vehicle for socio-political transformation. Hammersley writes that this practice also downplays the difficulty of bringing about socio-political change. “What is required by way of remedy is not “political balance,” writes Hammersley, “but, rather, that social science communities focus exclusively on what is supposed to be their unique, and far from easy, task: producing knowledge.”

Times Higher Ed (Acct. Req.)