This is the first of several ‘links’ in the book. These are not intended to summarize the preceding chapters, still less to critique them all in some systematic way. On the contrary, the links will be very selective. They are no more than my musings – a possible abuse of my editorial privileges – drawing out some very specific issues that struck me as being of particular interest or importance. They are links in the sense that I am hoping to make links between chapters and, beyond that, across the book as a whole. They are also links in their larger ambition, occasionally to connect the discussion between these covers with other, wider discussions taking place elsewhere in the social sciences, or in the everyday life of public policy and management. I begin with the various attempts to define the varieties of contextualism. In the opening chapter, Turo Virtanen distinguishes between (1) epistemological and methodological contextualism, (2) ontological contextualism and (3) historical and linguistic contextualism.
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