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Max Weber s Types of Rationality Cornerstones for the
Fi (for work related matters) antti. Ukkonen (at) gmail. Com (for other business) The ideal type is one of Weber s best known contributions to contemporary sociology. It occupies a very important place in his methodology.
Weber believed, it was the responsibility of sociologists to develop conceptual tools. The most important of such conceptual tool is the ideal type. According to New Websters Dictionary Ideal is a conception or a standard of something in its highest perfection. It refers to mental image or conception rather than a material object. It is a model.
Sociology 250 Notes on Max Weber
The term type means a kind, class or group as distinguished by a particular character. So generally, we may conceptualize ideal type as a kind, category, class or group of objects things or persons with particular character that seems to be the best example of it. Weber used Ideal type in a specific sense. To him Ideal type is a mental construct, like a model, for the scrutiny and systematic characterization of a concrete situation. Indeed he used Ideal type as a methodological tool to understand and analyze social reality.
Methodology is a conceptual and logical research procedure by which knowledge is developed. Historically much of the methodological concern in the social sciences has been directed towards establishing their scientific credentials. Max Weber was particularly concerned with the problem of objectivity in social sciences. Hence he used Ideal type as a methodological tool that looks at reality objectively. It scrutinizes, classifies, systematizes and defines social reality without subjective bias.
The Ideal types are nothing to do with values. Its function as a research tool is for classification and comparison. Population and Development Review is published quarterly. Please visit the journal s website to read and submit an article. This collection of essays on population and public policy marks the occasion and celebrates his scholarly career.
The opening essays in this supplement to Population and Development Review cover population renewal in affluent societies, the management of intergenerational relations throughout history, and the sustainability issues confronting the modern welfare state. Several essays examine the role of public policy in lowering high fertility others offer novel insights on natural and human capital and technology.