On the Importance of Reflection on Disciplinary Norms: A Response to Jan Kofroň and Ilona Kruntorádová

  • Jakub Záhora
Keywords: political science, methodology, ontology, epistemology, disciplinary politics


In this paper I critically engage with a recent article by Jan Kofroň and Ilona Kruntorádová dealing with methodology courses at Czech departments of political science. First, I show how their methodological approach leads the authors to put too much emphasis on the lack of familiarity with quantitative methods as the biggest shortcoming of political science in the Czech Republic. Second, I focus on the disciplinary assumptions of the discussed article. I demonstrate that the paper is underpinned by a specific understanding of social sciences which deems certain approaches as less scientific. I then relate these notions to the authors’ understanding of the practical relevance of social sciences. In the conclusion, I discuss how these critical points can be utilized in potential future projects that would investigate the current state of political science in the Czech Republic.

Author Biography

Jakub Záhora
born in 1988, he is a doctoral candidate at the Department of International Relations of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University in Prague. He holds degrees in Security Studies from the same department and in Near and Middle Eastern Studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), the University of London. He further conducted several study and research stays in Israel. In his doctoral thesis, he looks into the politics of materiality and infrastructure at Israeli settlements in the West Bank. More generally, his research interests cover critical security studies with emphasis on poststructuralist approaches, ethnographic methods in political science and Israeli politics and society.