Complexity Theory and the Social Sciences: An Introduction

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Psychology Press, 1998 - Social Science - 206 pages
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Chaos and complexity are the new buzz words in both science and contemporary society. The ideas they represent have enormous implications for the way we understand and engage with the world. Complexity Theory and the Social Sciences introduces students to the central ideas which surround the chaos/complexity theories. It discusses key concepts before using them as a way of investigating the nature of social research. By applying them to such familiar topics as urban studies, education and health, David Byrne allows readers new to the subject to appreciate the contribution which complexity theory can make to social research and to illuminating the crucial social issues of our day.

  

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Contents

Understanding the complex
14
the complexity
35
Complexity and the quantitative programme
54
Analysing social complexity
72
regions cities
89
The complex character of health and illness
107
Complexity education and change
122
the limits to urban
139
Conclusion
157
Glossary
168
Bibliography
189
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About the author (1998)

David Byrne is Senior Lecturer in Social Policy at the University of Durham. He is author of Beyond the Inner City and has published a number of articles in urban sociology and social policy.

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