Summarize three different positions that have been taken con…

Summarize three different positions that have been taken concerning the influence of values on social science. Illustrate the three positions with an example. Must pass turn it in and have one quote  min of 250 words.


The influence of values on social sciences has been a widely debated topic in the academic community. Different perspectives have emerged, each presenting diverse positions regarding the extent to which values should be considered in the social science research process. This paper will summarize three distinct positions and provide an illustrative example for each viewpoint. These positions include the value-neutral approach, the value-relevance approach, and the value-loaded approach.

Value-Neutral Approach

The value-neutral approach argues that social science research should strive for objectivity and impartiality by excluding subjective values from the research process. Proponents of this approach maintain that social scientists must remain detached observers and ensure that their personal values do not influence their research findings. According to this viewpoint, social science should focus solely on empirical observation and explanation, divorced from normative judgments.

For example, in a study on the causes of income inequality, a value-neutral social scientist would solely focus on identifying and analyzing the economic and sociological factors that contribute to the phenomenon. They would avoid making value-laden statements or recommendations on the moral implications of income inequality. The goal is to maintain scientific integrity and provide an objective account of the phenomena being studied.

Value-Relevance Approach

In contrast to the value-neutral approach, the value-relevance approach asserts that social science should acknowledge the role of values in research, as they play a crucial role in shaping society. Advocates of this approach argue that social scientists should actively engage with the values and perspectives of the communities they study and incorporate them into the research design and analysis. By doing so, social scientists can better understand the social context and produce more meaningful and relevant findings.

For instance, when studying the impact of educational policies on minority communities, a value-relevance-oriented social scientist would not only examine the statistical data and objective measures but also incorporate the experiences and perspectives of the community members. This approach recognizes the importance of values in influencing individuals’ behavior and attitudes, aiming for a more comprehensive understanding of the societal issues being investigated.

Value-Loaded Approach

The value-loaded approach goes a step further than the value-relevance approach by arguing that values should not only be acknowledged but openly embraced and advocated for within social science research. Proponents of this approach argue that values are inherently intertwined with social science and cannot be detached from the research process. They contend that social scientists must actively promote certain values and ideologies through their research to bring about social change and advance a particular agenda.

To exemplify this position, consider a study on climate change and environmental sustainability. A value-loaded social scientist would not only research and document the consequences of climate change but also actively work towards influencing policy-making and advocating for environmental values in society. This approach prioritizes the researcher’s commitment to specific values and considers social science as a tool for advancing those values rather than merely observing and analyzing phenomena.


In summary, the influence of values on social sciences has generated various positions within the academic community. The value-neutral approach emphasizes objectivity and impartiality, excluding subjective values from research. The value-relevance approach acknowledges the role of values in shaping society and seeks to incorporate them into the research process. Lastly, the value-loaded approach advocates for openly embracing and advancing values within social science research. Each position embodies a unique perspective on the influence of values and presents different expectations for conducting social science research. Understanding these positions is essential for researchers to navigate the complexities of values within the social science discipline.