idiographic/nomothetic methods

idiographic/nomothetic methods
Distinction in method drawn by the historian Wilhelm Windelband (1848–1915). An idiographic method is concerned with individual matters of fact, as in history, or map-making. A nomothetic method is concerned to formulate general laws. Windelband was concerned to show that the human sciences, or Geisteswissenschaften, such as history, had their own methods and discipline, in spite of their dissimilarity from natural science. The extent to which disciplines such as economics are nomothetic or idiographic is debatable.

Philosophy dictionary. . 2011.

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