The Lively Science is Michael Agar's accessible, idiosyncratic, often humorous, and sometimes controversial explication of his own polestar truth: Research on humans in their social world by other humans is not a traditional science like the one created by Galileo and Newton. However, if the social world is not a lab, neither is it a collection of random events. The book lays out a clear, straightforward path to carrying out the basic scientific tasks of forming questions and answering them to explore and account for that non-randomness. The author deploys myriad engaging examples drawn from a lifetime of applied and basic research to demonstrate how human science researchers can produce discoveries that are scientifically defensible and useful in the real world. Agar grounds his how-to guide in an approachable discussion of epistemology and draws on thinkers whose writings may be unfamiliar to many social scientists. He blends that work with new intellectual tools, such as complexity theory, disasters research, and conversational analysis. The result is an innovative and practical methodology that is true to the realities and surprises of research by and about humans, yet preserves scientific standards of falsifiability, empiricism, logic, and systematic presentation of results. This book represents the best of Michael Agar's visionary work. With a new foreword by Michael Brown celebrating Agar's enormous contribution to social science methodology, The Lively Science is for all researchers who seek to explore the full potential of a human social science.