News Item 227

04-Jul-12 - Q&A Session with Authors of the Highly Praised Doing Archival Research in Political Science!

Doing Archival Research in Political Science is a first-of-its-kind book—traversing political science and library and information science—that challenges political scientists’ reliance on “easy data” promising in return “better data.” The editors propose that the archival record is replete with data that are often superior to current, available public data, both quantitative and qualitative. Substantive chapters in Doing Archival Research in Political Science illustrate how archival data improve understanding across the array of subfields in American politics. It also challenges archivists to rethink their collections through the prism of political science.

Doing Archival Research in Political Science holds tremendous cross-disciplinary appeal. Students and faculty in political science are exposed to a fertile but underutilized source of empirical data. Political scientists will benefit from the methodological perspectives, the practical advice about doing archival work, and the concrete examples of archives-based research across the subfields in American politics (e.g., congressional studies, presidential studies, public opinion, national security, interest groups, and public policy).

Students and faculty in library and archival studies will benefit greatly from the candid discussion of the unique theoretical and methodological concerns inherent in political science, improving their ability to reach out and promote their collections to political scientists. Examples of archives-based political science research will help library faculty better understand how their collections are being utilized by users.

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