Historians Jo Guldi and David Armitage, authors of The History Manifesto, share a bit of their perspective on the need for historical perspective in our time:
The arbitration of data is a task in which the history departments of major research universities will almost certainly take a lead since it requires talents and training which no other discipline possesses. Historians are trained to synthesize the various data even when they come from radically different sources and times. They are adept at noticing institutional bias in the data, thinking about where data comes from, comparing data of different kinds, resisting the powerful beckoning of received mythology and understanding that there are different kinds of causation.
You can read their entire post at the History News Network here: History News Network | Historians May Never Rule the World, but Their Models will Rule the Data-Driven Future.