Summer Institute at UH Creates New Breed of Social and Policy Science Scholar

EITM Research Approach Marries the Mathematical with the Empirical

Graduate students from Houston and across the country will converge at the University of Houston to participate in a workshop that will change them into a new breed of social science researchers. 

The EITM Summer Institute 2015 is planned for June 15 – 26 and is designed to sharpen participants’ dissertations and research projects. The workshop is a hosted by the UH Hobby Center for Public Policy.

“EITM” is Empirical Implications of Theoretical Models and it represents a research approach that marries formal analysis with statistical analysis in social and policy sciences.  EITM

“Typically, students are taught mathematical and empirical testing in separate courses. EITM instructs students in how to merge the two,” said Jim Granato, professor and director of the Hobby Center for Public Policy (HCPP). “It’s fundamental to science exercises for theories and tests to link in a transparent way so that we can build on that research.”

The EITM approach to research is supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF), which also funds the UH workshop. 

During the summer institute, participants will present their research proposals, which are then critiqued for feedback. In addition, they’ll learn how to write NSF proposals.   

“This further enhances their research capabilities and helps with their professionalization,” Granato said. “Getting NSF grants is a very competitive process. This will help students to become competitive. You have to compete against the best in order to be the best.”

The reputation of the summer workshop has grown since its debut in 2012. Faculty representing diverse disciplines will come from Brown University, New York University, University of Iowa, University of Kansas, University of San Francisco, Rice University and University of Texas-Dallas.  They’ll join HCPP faculty at the EITM Summer Institute.

“Too often in social and policy science, theories are created independent to tests and vice versa, which impedes scientific knowledge,” Granato said. “So students must master a broader set of skills that most social and policy scientists did not learn when they were in graduate school.”

For more information on the EITM Summer Institute 2015, visit