The conduct of most of social science occurs outside the laboratory.
Such studies in field science explore phenomena that cannot for practical, technical, or ethical reasons be explored under controlled conditions.
These phenomena cannot be fully isolated from their environment or investigated by manipulation or intervention.
Yet measurement, including rigorous or clinical measurement, does provide analysts with a sound basis for discerning what occurs under fieldconditions, and why. Science Outside the Laboratory explores the state of measurement theory, its reliability, and the role expert judgment plays in field investigations from the perspective of the philosophy of science.
Its discussion of the problems of passive observation, the calculus of observation, the two-model problem, and model-based consensus uses illustrations drawn primarily from economics.
The treatment clarifies the extent to which measurement provides valid information about objects andevents in field sciences, but also has implications for measurement in the laboratory.