moScott Page’s new book is a great introduction on how to use and evaluate different kinds of mathematical models in the social sciences. Yours truly will be back soon for a lengthy review, but let me just notice that — as I have over and over again emphasized on this blog — Page underscores that if we want to explain social phenomena, relations and structures, we have to go beyond data. Data do not speak for themselves. Without theory and a search for mechanisms and deep causality, we won’t be able to understand or explain what happens in the real world.