- Baur, Nina: Problems of linking theory and data in historical sociology and longitudinal research.
- Freund, Alexander: Oral history as process-generated data.
- Hagenah, Jörg; Meulemann, Heiner: The analytical potentials of survey trend data from market research: the case of German media analysis data.
- Jones, Constance J.; Peskin, Harvey: Americans' psychological health trajectories: analyses of survey data from the intergenerational studies.
- Schmitz, Andreas; Skopek, Jan; Schulz, Florian; Klein, Doreen; Blossfeld, Hans-Peter: Indicating mate preferences by mixing survey and process-generated data: the case of attitudes and behaviour in online mate search.
- Baumgarten, Britta; Grauel, Jonas: The theoretical potential of website and newspaper data for analysing political communication processes.
- Franke, Christoph: Genealogies of noble families as a database for social science? Possibilities and limits.
- Young, Janette Olivia: Triangulating public administrational and genealogical data: the case of Australian migration research.
- Mayer, Thomas: Wie kommt die Eugenik in die Eugenik? Sampling und Auswahlverfahren von prozess-produzierten Daten am Beispiel eugenischer Netzwerke in Österreich.
- Rass, Christoph: Sampling military personnel records: data quality and theoretical uses of organizational process generated data.
- Salheiser, Axel: Handling ideological bias and shifting validity of longitudinal data: the case of process-generated data on GDR elites.
- Bauernschmidt, Stefan: Der Einfluss von Gatekeepern auf das Stichprobenproblem am Beispiel von Automobilfernsehwerbung.
- Volkens, Andrea; Bara, Judith; Budge, Ian: Data quality in content analysis: the case of the comparative manifestos project.
- Ernst, Stefanie: Using qualitative content analysis of popular literature for uncovering long-term social processes: the case of gender relations in Germany.
- Kuzmics, Helmut: Concept for validating the theoretical potential of historical sources: the case of analyzing long-term changes in the Habsburg military habitus.
- Roberts, Brian: Performative social science: a consideration of skills, purpose and context.
- Chikhi, Mohamed; Diebolt, Claude: Transitory exogenous shocks in a non-linear framework: application to the cyclical behaviour of the German aggregate wage earnings.
HSR Vol. 34 (2009) No. 1: Special Issue: Linking Theory
Nina Baur (Hrsg.): Linking Theory and Data
Theory and data are closely linked in empirical research: Data are the main source for building and testing theories, and without theoretical focus, it is impossible to select and interpret data. Still, the relationship between theory and data is only rarely discussed and, if so, only on a general level. Focussing on process-oriented and longitudinal research questions, the authors of this special issue contribute to this discussion by elaborating some data types that can be used for analyzing long-term social processes.
For each specific data type, it is important to ask about their specific characteristics and how this effects interpretation. What are the advantages and disadvantages of this data type? For which kind of theoretical and thematical research question are these data suitable? Where and how can these data be sampled and collected? What specific problems in sampling, interpretation and validity do arise in longitudinal research, and how can they be solved?
The contributors address these questions from a broad range of theories (as different as Rational Choice Theory, Figurational Sociology, Biographical Research, Discourse Theory and Cultural Theories) and by either re-analyzing research-elicited data (e.g. interviews, surveys) or by using process-generated data (e.g. ego-documents, popular literature, military records, genealogies, newspapers, television commercials and web-based process-generated data).