exploring the relationship between social science and software development methodologies: a blog by Pascal Belouin

I take the liberty of going off-subject a little bit by publishing this essay I wrote recently. Hope some will find it of interest! Abstract Neuroscientific discourses about addiction have greatly contributed to our understanding of the biological phenomena that accompany repeated, compulsive drug use. We now have a deep understanding of the mode of [...]

Read more...



Since I had a bit of success with my article about adopting a poststructuralist perspective towards user experience (Indeed, 2 people commented! amazing: Thank you Kshitiz and mc), I thought it would be nice to go a bit deeper in the subject, by briefly evoking some of the main notions behind poststructuralist theory and by [...]

Read more...



Falsificationism could be understood as a solution to the problems entailed by the use of inductive reasoning for the construction of genuine scientific knowledge, which was introduced by Karl Popper in the middle of the twentieth century. Even though it has since been the subject of criticisms, this concept provoked a redefinition of the line [...]

Read more...

§267 · April 13, 2010 · Theory · (No comments) · Tags: , , , , ,


Although a polemical subject, the application of the concept of closed systems in the social sciences has been seen as a way to limit and even rule out the influence of certain variables in the study of social objects, which in turns seems to allow the elicitation of clear-cut causal relationships. Those causal relationships can [...]

Read more...

§261 · April 13, 2010 · Theory · (No comments) · Tags: , , , ,


During the course of fieldwork, the ethnographer can take on a number of different roles, which could be classified in regards to the degree of one’s involvement with the population he or she is studying. For instance, according to Junker (1960) and Gold’s (1958) model, the roles available to the researcher range from the ‘complete [...]

Read more...

§125 · March 16, 2010 · Practice · 1 comment · Tags: , , , , , , ,


The transcript presented below is a classic piece of data that have been used extensively by numerous conversation analysts to illustrate a rather large variety of CA concepts and notions. Below is a short example of how conversation analysis can be carried out, and what kind of results it can yield. Transcript: A call to [...]

Read more...

§113 · March 16, 2010 · Practice · (No comments) · Tags: , , , ,


Conversation analysis, or CA, focuses on the fine-grain analysis of talk in the framework of actual, day-to-day conversations between social actors. Its aim is to provide practical tools for allowing an understanding of the tacit rules and inherent order of common, day-to-day conversations by using short transcripts or recordings as data. This discourse analysis tradition [...]

Read more...



Overview of the Proposed Research Topic During the relatively short history of software development, several development methods have been introduced, from the rather standard waterfall model derived from development methods that can be found in more ‘traditional’ industries (Royce, 1970), to solutions more adapted to the particular issues involved in software development such as user-centered [...]

Read more...



Abstract It could be argued that discourse surrounding software development methodologies has evolved in recent years from a focus on technology and pure computer science subjects to issues of values, meaning and communication. This shift in the way software development is perceived in the professional world could be further explored through a Foucauldian analysis of [...]

Read more...