Article Information

THE FOURTH PARADIGM OF SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH AND SOCIAL SCIENCES AND HUMANITIES

Svetlana Platonova (platon-s@bk.ru)

Izhevsk Agricultural Academy, Izhevsk, Russia

Citation: Platonova S. (2020) «Chetvertaya paradigma» nauchnykh issledovaniy i sotsiogumanitarnyye nauki [The fourth paradigm of scientific research and social sciences and humanities]. Zhurnal sotsiologii i sotsialnoy antropologii [The Journal of Sociology and Social Anthropology], 23(3): 7–24. https://doi.org/10.31119/jssa.2020.23.3.1 (in Russian)

Abstract. The article considers the concept of the “fourth paradigm” and the features of this paradigm in relation to socio-humanitarian Sciences. The “fourth paradigm” is characterized by the emergence of fundamentally new scientific methods related to the processing of big data, and is focused on obtaining conclusions arising from the data. The author considers the emergence of two branches of science within the fourth paradigm: computer science and digital science. It is noted that this division is typical not only for natural Sciences, but also for social and humanitarian Sciences. It is noted that big data technologies can “skip” marginalized groups and social minorities. It is argued that within the fourth paradigm, at least two types of science have developed and function that use different epistemological strategies: data-centric science with an inductive methodology, and data-driven science that uses a more complex methodology that combines induction, deduction, and abduction. Quantitative and qualitative research should not be contrasted; it is necessary to combine big data and small data. Epistemological strategies of the fourth paradigm in the social Sciences and Humanities, without abandoning big data, systematize and interpret this data taking into account the context and the role of the researcher in the research process. This perspective allows us to clarify the epistemological and methodological status of modern social and humanitarian knowledge as combining elements of classical and non-classical, quantitative and qualitative approaches.

Keywords: fourth paradigm, data-centric science, data-driven science, quantitative and qualitative research.

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