The growth and health of the social sciences owe a good deal to the generally held belief that they are socially useful, but is this really so? Do they deliver the goods they promise? In The Uses of Social Research, first published in 1982, Martin Bulmer answers these and other questions concerning the uses of empirical social science in the policy-making process, and provides an extended analysis of the main issues.

This title provides a valuable introduction to the patterns of influence exercised by the social sciences on government. It shows how the results of social research feed into the political system and what models of the relationship between research and policy are most convincing. This book will be of interest to students of the social sciences.

Preface;  1. A Historical Perspective upon Applied Social Research in Britain  2. Models of the Relationship between Knowledge and Policy  3. Conceptualising Problems and Designing Research: ‘Deprivation’ and ‘Disadvantage’  4. Measurement and Explanation: Physical Handicap and Health and Illness  5. The Use of Social Research by Governmental Commissions  6. The Institutional Context of Social Research  7. Patterns of Influence;  References;  Index