This is a companion volume to the Causal Models in the Social Sciences, the majority of articles concern panel designs involving repeated measurements while a smaller cluster involves discussions of how experimental designs may be improved by more explicit attention to causal models. All of the papers are concerned with complications that may occur in actual research designs--as compared with idealized ones that often become the basis of textbook discussions of design issues.
In thinking about the revision of that volume, considerable literature has accumulated. As a result, this volume attempts to bridge the gap in time and substance to that earlier effort. Blalock examined articles that seemed to hold the most promise of expanding the variety of topics in research methods to the causal modeling approach, and addressing the design issues involved. The majority of these fell under the heading of panel designs involving repeated measurements; a smaller cluster involved discussions of how our understanding of experimental designs could be improved by paying explicit attention to causal models.
Blalock presented five chapters bearing on experimental designs into Part I, since the issues with which they deal are more general than those that treat more specifically with the handling of change data. Although many readers may have more immediate interest in these latter papers, which appear in Part II, Blalock thought it wise to encourage such readers to examine broader issues before plunging specifically into discussions of panel designs.