Notes on the history of Social Science Research: In celebration of its 50th anniversary

Guillermina Jasso

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    This paper reports a first look at the founding of Social Science Research, providing a few key signposts but keenly aware that a full history must await recovery of many additional documentary materials. The journal was founded by James S. Coleman and Peter H. Rossi, who had trained at Columbia, taught at Chicago, and founded the interdisciplinary Department of Social Relations at Johns Hopkins. The Coleman-Rossi vision statement embeds three key ideas: (1) quantitative theoretical work and quantitative empirical work are close and constant partners; (2) quantitative theoretical work and quantitative empirical work each require special methods; and (3) crossing disciplinary lines spurs the growth of knowledge. The first issue of Social Science Research appeared in 1972. Then as now, SSR welcomed papers that may be too innovative or too technical (or too long or too short) for other journals, inclusive of papers that cross traditional disciplinary lines. Examination of the first four volumes (1972–1975) reveals a beautiful realization of the founders’ vision — a collection of rigorous quantitative papers from across the social sciences, pushing frontiers in both theory and empirics and in both substance and methods. There is innovation and creativity – and a touch of the playfulness that accelerates the growth of knowledge.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Article number102780
    JournalSocial Science Research
    StatePublished - Nov 2022


    • Academic journals
    • Academic publishing
    • Empirics
    • Quantitative empirics
    • Quantitative methods for empirical analysis
    • Quantitative methods for theoretical analysis
    • Quantitative theory
    • Social science
    • Theory

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Education
    • Sociology and Political Science


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