coronavirus, COVIS-19, social construction
Quantitative efforts to understand the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic need to be viewed through the lens of social construction. I begin by comparing the efforts to quantitatively measure the plague in London in 1665. Then I develop five propositions for studying the social construction of statistics: (1) facts are social constructions; (2) measuring involves making decisions, (3) counting is not straightforward; (4) all comparisons involve choices; and (5) social patterns shape numbers. After examining how these propositions affect what we know about COVID-19, I consider their implications for moving beyond mathematics when approaching numeracy.
Best, Joel. "COVID-19 and Numeracy: How about Them Numbers?." Numeracy 13, Iss. 2 (2020): Article 4. DOI: https://doi.org/10.5038/1936-4618.104.22.1681
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