Natural Disasters Emphasize Need for Data Responsibility

As climate change intensifies, catastrophic, record-setting natural disasters look increasingly like the “new normal” – from Hurricane Matthew killing at least 1,300 people in September to Typhoon Lionrock, the previous month, causing flooding that left 138 dead and more than 100,000 homeless in North Korea. What steps can we take to limit the destruction caused […]

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Our Twitter Emotions Tool Predicted the Trump Victory

As the world dissects the how and why of Donald Trump’s presidential victory, pollsters are already coming under severe criticism for getting it so wrong. But a tool we created that analysed emotions towards the two candidates on Twitter accurately predicted the result. Unlike other poll predictors that just take a snapshot in time, our […]

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Methods in Action: Meeting the Syrian Refugee Women of Beirut

I crawled into my bed at my flat-share in Beirut, shattered from a day of intense focus groups with women who had left their homes in war-torn Syria to seek refuge in the city. For ease of organisation, we had arranged three over the course of one day. The difficulty was that once a group […]

Categories: Qualitative

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Cape Town Summer School. Encounters with big data: An introduction to using big data in the social sciences

We are delighted to announce our first intensive summer school in the area of big data in the social sciences. In the first week of February 2017 staff from the UK Data Service will be visiting their data centre partners, DataFirst, at the University of Cape Town to run a 5-day intensive course which we […]

Categories: Big Data, Opportunities

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Video: ‘Big Data New Skills’ Panel at RC33

How will innovations in research methods and the new data environment impact teaching and research? That was the underlying question during a panel discussion hosted by SAGE Publishing at the 9th International Conference on Social Science Methodology. The conference, held every four years under the auspices of the International Sociological Association  Research Committee RC33 on […]

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Big Data and Social Research Roundup No. 3

In this third edition of our monthly big data and social research newsletter, we highlight the recent DataDive conducted under the banner of DataKind UK, and debut our SAGE Research Methods Video. The newsletter is viewable and scrollable below; if you’d like to receive the newsletter in your inbox every month, click HERE.

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Big Data Takes on the Bard

Christopher Marlowe, 16th-century playwright and contemporary of Shakespeare, is to be given co-writing credit alongside Shakespeare for the Henry VI trilogy in the New Oxford Shakespeare edition of the Bard’s collected works. This decision follows computerised textual analysis of the plays by a group of researchers led by Gary Taylor of Florida State University – […]

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DataKindUK DataDive: A Quick Look at the Hackathon

In late September SAGE Publishing sponsored DataKindUK’s DataDive, a hackathon bringing volunteer data scientists and social non-profits and social enterprises together for a weekend of social change through data analysis. A ‘data dive’ is a focused hacking weekend that works with a selected non-profit or social enterprise to help them improve their understanding of their […]

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Methods in Action: Creative Visual Methods

prime enemy of the best research is ‘the expectation.’ Researchers expect certain results or answers, and by Jove, they find them. Or they are familiar with the research terrain, and grow complacent in what they look for (or ignore what’s before their noses). If only someone could, as the old cliché goes, ‘draw a picture’ […]

Categories: ACWRIMO, Creative Methods, Creativity, MentorSpace, Qualitative, Tools and Resources, Visuals

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Size Doesn’t Matter in Big Data. What You Ask Does

Big data is changing the way we do science today. Traditionally, data were collected manually by scientists making measurements, using microscopes or surveys. These data could be analysed by hand or using simple statistical software on a PC. Big data has changed all that. These days, tremendous volumes of information are being generated and collected […]

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