Erklärung historischer Abläufe mit Computersimulationen (Using Computer Simulations for the Explanation of Historical Processes)
Historische Sozialforschung, Vol. 32, No. 4, 2007
28 Pages Posted: 13 May 2011
Date Written: 2007
Computer simulations are used in various scientific disciplines – with a raising tendency in the humanities, too. Since one will find a branch of historical research which utilizes the analysis of quantitative data and methods of social sciences or economics, respectively, it is quite obvious to use computer simulations in history. Therefore, in the following text, motivations, aims, constraints, and methodological questions of the application of computer simulations in historical research are discussed on the basis of several examples of simulation of historical processes. It will be concluded that, although there are severe methodological limitations to the application of computer simulations, if the application is carried out carefully and if those limitations are recognized, some important benefits for historical research can be identified.
Note: Downloadable document is in German.
Keywords: Computer Simulation, Philosophy of Science, Explanation, Understanding
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