Mathematical Models in the Social Sciences
As the need for more substantial mathematical training has increased among social science students, the lack of any adequate textbook between the very elementary and the very advanced levels has become crutial. The authors, long-time experts in this field, have answered the need with this volume, and the MIT Press has repsonded by bringing it into renewed circulation. Mathematical Models in the Social Sciences investigates and teaches the formation and analysis of mathematical models with detailed interpretations of the results. These models are self-contained, with the necessary mathematics included in each chapter. A vast range of topics in the social sciences and a wide variety of mathematical techniques are covered by the models. Ample opportunity is also provided for the students to form their own models. Republication of this book provides social science and mathematics students with a text that is the analogue of mathematical methods textbooks used in the study of the physical sciences and engineering. Prerequisites are kept to a minimum; a course in finite mathematics and a semester of calculus are all that is necessary.
The chapters cover these main topics (and employ the mathematical approach parenthetically indicated): methodology; preference rankings (an axiomatic approach); ecology (two dynamic models); market stability (a dynamic model); a Markov chain model in sociology; stabilization of money flow (an application of discrete potential theory); branching processes; organization theory (applications of graph theory); and optimal scheduling (a problem in dynamic programming).