Emmanuel Didier

Emmanuel Didier is a Full Professor at the Centre Maurice Halbwachs at École Normale Supérieure, Paris, and a member of the Center for the Study of Invention and Social Process at Goldsmiths, University of London. He is a founding member of EpiDaPo (Epigenetics, Data, Politics), initially a joint research unit of CNRS and UCLA. He taught at the University of Chicago and at UCLA and now teaches at Ecole Normale Supérieure and Ecole Nationale de la Statistique et de l'Administration Economique, both in Paris.

  • America by the Numbers

    Quantification, Democracy, and the Birth of National Statistics

    Emmanuel Didier

    How new techniques of quantification shaped the New Deal and American democracy.

    When the Great Depression struck, the US government lacked tools to assess the situation; there was no reliable way to gauge the unemployment rate, the number of unemployed, or how many families had abandoned their farms to become migrants. In America by the Numbers, Emmanuel Didier examines the development in the 1930s of one such tool: representative sampling. Didier describes and analyzes the work of New Deal agricultural economists and statisticians who traveled from farm to farm, in search of information that would be useful for planning by farmers and government agencies. Didier shows that their methods were not just simple enumeration; these new techniques of quantification shaped the New Deal and American democracy even as the New Deal shaped the evolution of statistical surveys.

    Didier explains how statisticians had to become detectives and anthropologists, searching for elements that would help them portray America as a whole. Representative surveys were one of the most effective instruments for their task. He examines pre-Depression survey techniques; the invention of the random sampling method and the development of the Master Sample; and the application of random sampling by employment experts to develop the “Trial Census of Unemployment.”

    • Paperback $55.00 £45.00

Contributor

  • Gaming the Metrics

    Gaming the Metrics

    Misconduct and Manipulation in Academic Research

    Mario Biagioli and Alexandra Lippman

    How the increasing reliance on metrics to evaluate scholarly publications has produced new forms of academic fraud and misconduct.

    The traditional academic imperative to “publish or perish” is increasingly coupled with the newer necessity of “impact or perish”—the requirement that a publication have “impact,” as measured by a variety of metrics, including citations, views, and downloads. Gaming the Metrics examines how the increasing reliance on metrics to evaluate scholarly publications has produced radically new forms of academic fraud and misconduct. The contributors show that the metrics-based “audit culture” has changed the ecology of research, fostering the gaming and manipulation of quantitative indicators, which lead to the invention of such novel forms of misconduct as citation rings and variously rigged peer reviews. The chapters, written by both scholars and those in the trenches of academic publication, provide a map of academic fraud and misconduct today. They consider such topics as the shortcomings of metrics, the gaming of impact factors, the emergence of so-called predatory journals, the “salami slicing” of scientific findings, the rigging of global university rankings, and the creation of new watchdogs and forensic practices.

    • Paperback $45.00 £38.00