Recommendations of the Committee on Political Research
of the American Political Science Association

Charles Merriam, Robert Crane, John Fairlie, and Clyde King

The Committee on Political Research recommends:

I.  The establishment of a Social Science Research Council consisting of two members each from Economics, Sociology, Political Science, and History for the purpose of —

(a) The development of research in the social studies.

(b) The establishment of a central clearing house for projects of social investigation.

(c) The encouragement of the establishment of institutes for social science study with funds adequate for the execution of various research projects and publications in the various fields of science.

(d) Suggestions to various governmental authorities regarding the statistics collected in the field of social investigation.

(e) The teaching of social science in American colleges and universities.

(f) Any other ways and means of encouraging the development of the scientific study of politics.

II. The establishment of a permanent committee on political research for the purpose of encouraging the growth of scientific investigation in the field of government.

III. A quadrennial survey of significant advances in political science at appropriate sessions of the American Political Science Association.

IV. Cooperation with special institutes and agencies for field work by professional students of government during the summer months or at other times during the year.

V. The holding of an annual institute of political science for detailed consideration of political methods and for the detailed examination of a few selected topics in the field of government.

VI. Concerted and persistent effort to bring to the attention of university authorities and the public the need of larger numbers of professional students of government with larger time and facilities for scientific work.

VII. Further study of the problems of-

(a) More adequate reporting and digesting of governmental actions.

( 312)

(b) More adequate reporting of the practical operation of govern-mental experiments by trained observers.

(c) The development of more scientific methods of arriving at definite political conclusions.

VIII. Your committee urges that every effort be made to bring about the closest coöperation between students of politics and the other branches of social science, and also with the students of psychology, anthropology, geography, biological sciences, and engineering, to the end that the new political science may avail itself of all of the results of modern thought in the attempt to work out scientific methods of political control.

This section sums up the results of the committee's work in considering the ways and means by which the quality and quantity of political research might be improved. Some of these recommendations are very general and others are more specific.

The first recommendation-for the establishment of a research council-was approved by the American Political Science Association and a similar resolution was passed by the American Economic Association and the American Sociological Society. The first meeting of the representatives of the various associations to consider this question was held on February 24, 1923.

The second recommendation for the establishment of a permanent committee on political research has been approved by the Council and the American Political Science Association. Last year's committee was continued with the addition of Professor Holcombe of Harvard.

The fifth recommendation for the holding of an annual institute of political science was not officially acted upon, but informal action has been taken and definite plans are under way for the holding of such an institute some time during the summer vacation of 1923. Professor Arnold B. Hall of the University of Wisconsin is chairman of the informal committee in charge of this undertaking.



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