Welcome to Social Theories, a website that strives to bring some formalism to all the wild and provocative assertions people make about we how we should reform our politics, culture, and society.
The approach is simple: take a bold statement someone makes, find what social thinkers of the past have written upon it, re-express the essence of the proposal in terms of a model that can be demonstrated using math or a computer simulation, let the model run, and assess the results to determine whether the policy proposal still makes sense.
The major choices in the menu above reflect this process:
- Articles: A collection of both inflammatory and reflective pieces proposing “This country is falling apart! We should do X, Y, and Z….”
- Books: Crucial information offered in longer format by both contemporary and classical writers on history, politics, psychology, and economics.
- Models: Existing and prospective means of putting the policy suggestions from the articles and books into a simulation, so that we can see how the ideas would play out and appraise if these ideas have any merit.
- Commentary: My thoughts on the above, either before or after I have translated the theories and models into computer simulations and let those systems run.
This site is maintained by Ralph Hughes, MA (Stanford ’82) and collects work he hopes he can distill into a doctoral dissertation. He freely offers tutorials to any student wanting to explore this subject matter in earnest as a means of adding professionalism to his or her studies. Model studies can easily lead to authoring white papers regarding what we can learn from careful abstraction and simulations–white paper that will add handsomely to one’s application to the country’s best universities. I communicate best through email, so please address firstname.lastname@example.org with your questions and comments. Cheers.