What Can Social Sciences Give to Estonia?*
The article discusses certain widespread confusing notions about social sciences and their place in the society.
First we explain what is included in social sciences. We argue against the idea that researchers are detached from life and do nothing but write articles, and that social sciences are far from real life. In contrast, we bring arguments for the usefulness of researchers and social sciences. We show that, in reality, knowledge about human beings and society, that is, social science, is significantly closer to life and more practicable than the stereotypes. A large part of social science research is directly or indirectly in the service of the advancement of life, and even if no studies have been directly commissioned by anyone, they can still be tested in real life at some stage of the research work. However, such steps require both time and money. To illustrate all this, we present research papers by social science researchers of the University of Tartu which are good examples of the broad-based studies and lines of thought necessary for Estonia.