Silberman School of Social Work, Hunter College at the City University of New York
Summer Institute in Computational Social Science Partner Site

June 17th, 2019 - June 28th, 2019

Sponsored by the Russell Sage Foundation & The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

The Silberman School of Social Work, part of the City University of New York’s Hunter College, will host its second Summer Institute in Computational Social Science partner location from June 17th, 2019 to June 28th, 2019.

SICSS NYC-Hunter is for both social scientists and data scientists interested in broadening their knowledge and usage of computational social science. In particular, this institute targets applied social scientists, practitioners, and scholars who have little to no exposure to computational social science methods and theories. The aim of the SICSS NYC-Hunter institute is to build a cohort of applied social science students, scholars, instructors, and practitioners who can employ computational social science techniques across practice areas and domains.

The program is open to all interested participants, though we will be unable to provide accomodations for those not already living in NYC or the tri-state area. However, we will be able to proivde a modest travel and lodging reimbursement for those who wish to travel from out of town. SICSS NYC-Hunter is sponsored by the Sloan Foundation and the Russell Sage Foundation. It will be hosted at the Silberman School of Social Work, located at E. 119th street and 3rd Ave.

Participants in SICSS NYC-Hunter will gain hands-on experience in working with computational methods including learning programming in R and Python, using version control tools like Github, and applying these tools to applied social science research problems. The curriculum will consist of a combination of livestreamed lectures and tutorials, group activities and exercises. We will cover a broad range of computational research topics from text analysis to digital data collection.

A primary goal of SICSS NYC-Hunter is to bring together applied social science scholars, computer and data scientists, as well as practitioners to share their strengths and enhance each other’s work. Participants will be encouraged to workshop exisiting work, as well as develop new colaborations. There will also be pilot funding avalable.

There is no cost to participate, and meals during the day will be provided. We will make every effort to support attendance with metro cards and child care arrangements, should there be need.

To apply, please submit a short application by March 1st, 2019. View application here

Silberman logo
CUNY logo

Organizers

Maria Y. Rodriguez

is an Assistant Professor at the Silberman School of Social Work, part of the City University of New York’s Hunter College. She is a faculty affiliate at the CUNY Institute for Demographic Research (CIDR), and graduate faculty at the CUNY Grad Center. Her research interests intersect demography, computational social science, housing policy and social welfare. Currently, she has two active areas of research: (1) understanding the impacts of algorithmic decision-making in human services (with particular attention to racially marginalized groups), and (2) using Twitter data to understand the lived experience of marginalized communities in the United States. She can be found on Twitter @HousingTheCity.

Local Speakers

Josh Raines

Coming Soon!

Desmond Patton

Coming Soon!

Melanie Sage

Coming Soon!

Lauri Goldkind

Coming Soon!

Richard Smith

Coming Soon!

Teaching Assistants

Gleneara Bates-Pappas

Coming Soon!

Sebastian Hoyos-Torres

Coming Soon!

Participants

Image of Angelo Cabrera

Angelo Cabrera

Angelo Cabrera is the Founder and a Board of Director of Masa-MexEd Inc. and Founding Board Member of the American Dream Charter School in the South Bronx. He has an extensive track record creating and promoting educational programs for the recent immigrant community in New York City, as well as returning migrants to Mexico. He is currently managing a research project at the Marxe School of Public and International Affairs-Baruch College.

Anne Kou

Coming soon!

Image of Brandon Kramer

Brandon Kramer

Brandon L. Kramer (PhD, Rutgers University) is a postdoctoral research associate at the University of Virginia’s Biocomplexity Institute and Initiative (starting July 2019). Drawing from insights at the intersection of medical sociology, science & technology studies and computational social science, Brandon studies how assumptions about race, gender and sexuality become imbued into biomedical research. In his dissertation, he examined the racialization of testosterone in scientific research and the impact that this has had on the construction of racial disparities in prostate cancer. Brandon incorporates a range of methods, including content analysis, experiments, biosocial methods, computational text analysis, and social network analysis.

Daejun Park

Daejun Park is a Ph.D. candidate in social work at University at Albany. His research interests include alcohol and other drug use, as well as health disparities. He has served as a research assistant at UAlbany.

Diane Yoong

Coming soon!

Evette Cordoba

Coming soon!

Image of Feng-Yi Liu

Feng-Yi Liu

Feng-Yi Liu received his BA and MA degree in Social Welfare at National Chung Cheng University in Taiwan. He also completed a second MA at Columbia University in Mathematical Statistics. Now he is a Ph.D. candidate in the school of social work at Rutgers University, and a graduated statistician recognized by the American Statistics Association. His broad research interests include immigrant family and child development, American immigration policy, and American child care policy. His dissertation thesis focuses on how family instability and child welfare interventions might influence child development among low-income immigrant children.

Friederike Windel

Friederike Windel is a PhD student in the Critical Social and Personality Psychology program at the CUNY Graduate Center. Her research focuses on how white Germans position themselves in relationship to Germans of color and people of color in Germany. She uses narrative research to explore positionality and currently examines how white German volunteers construct themselves in relationship to refugees.

Hannah Szlyk

Coming soon!

Jiyeon Chang

Coming soon!

Jon Phillips

Coming soon!

Image of Kasey Zapatke

Kasey Zapatke

Kasey is a third-year doctoral student in Sociology at The Graduate Center (CUNY). He is broadly interested in urban inequality, and specifically focuses his research on housing inequality, residential segregation, affordable housing, neighborhood change, gentrification, and suburbanization. Kasey is working on developing a dissertation project that looks at how neighborhood patterns of inequality and residential segregation shape spatial patterns of neighborhood affordability for the middle class.

Loredana Loy

Coming soon!

Lorena Kourousias

Coming soon!

Image of Maya Godbole

Maya Godbole

Maya is going on her 5th year in the Basic and Applied Social Psychology PhD program at CUNY Graduate Center. Maya’s research focuses around understanding, and intervening against, factors that contribute to disparities in the representation and achievement of women in competitive contexts (e.g., leadership). She is particularly interested in using social psychological research to inform policy and practice within organizations—for example, her dissertation research investigates how sex discrimination policy can impact women’s perceptions of organizational climate, motivation, and achievement. In her free time, Maya likes running around Prospect Park, doing/attempting the NYTimes Crossword, and reading.

Narayanamoorthy Nanditha

Coming soon!

Nga Than

Coming soon!

Pedro Rodriguez

Coming soon!

Image of Salar Khaleghzadegan

Salar Khaleghzadegan

Salar Khaleghzadegan is pursuing a Master of Public Policy with a concentration in Health Policy at the University of Maryland Baltimore County and is a Research Coordinator at the Johns Hopkins Medicine Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality. He is currently exploring research focused on understanding how to improve equitable access, quality, and outcomes of care with an emphasis on maintaining cost-effectiveness through high-value care. One of his current projects uses textual analysis to examine healthcare documents using NLP methods. Another project studies the linguistic and paralinguistic features of patient-provider communication to assess how these dynamic interactions drive outcomes (i.e. compliance with complex care regiments; patient experiences of respect, dignity, and satisfaction with care). This fall, he will be applying to doctoral programs in Health Policy and Management, where he hopes to focus on health services research while integrating emerging quantitative and computational methods such as machine learning, causal inference, and automated text analysis.

Image of Sapir Soker Elimaliah

Sapir Soker Elimaliah

Sapir Soker Elimaliah, is a doctoral student in the developmental psychology program at the City University of New York, College of Staten Island. Prior to their Ph.D studies, Sapir owned a clinic for Applied Behavior Analysis therapy and worked with toddlers with autism. Sapir’s research interests focus on motor development in autism and specifically restricted and repetitive behaviors. Sapir is also interested in the physiological markers of restricted and repetitive behaviors in autism.

Image of Sarah Riley

Sarah Riley

Sarah Riley is a PhD student in information science at Cornell University, where she is focusing on bias in automated decision-making systems. She is interested in computational methods and policy interventions for identifying and mitigating bias. Sarah has a bachelor’s degree from Amherst College and a master’s in public policy from the University of California, Berkeley.

Shashi Goel

Shashi Goel is specialized in Political Science and Women’s and Gender studies. She has done research in many areas in Political Sociology, International relations, Women’s studies and Human Rights, Migration. She is currently working as Honorary Fellow in the Center for Women and Gender studies at University of Wisconsin. Previously she has worked as visiting faculty at Qatar University.

Shawna Brandle

Coming soon!

Image of Tim Ittner

Tim Ittner

Tim Ittner is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Sociology at Columbia University. Before arriving at Columbia, he graduated from Brown University in May 2018 with an Sc.B. with Honors in Social Analysis & Research. Tim has a penchant for interdisciplinary work and using innovative data, methods, and designs in his research. His interests revolve around population geography, spatial demography, and inequality dynamics.

Zoe Carey

Coming soon!

Pre-arrival

As we discussed in our call for applications, we have arranged two types of training prior to the event this summer. Some students have more sophisticated coding skills but little exposure to social science; other students have significant exposure to social science but lack coding skills.

Coding

The majority of the coding work presented at the 2019 SICSS will employ R. However, you are welcome to employ a language of your choice, such as Python, Julia, or other languages that are commonly used by computational social scientists. If you would like to work in R, we recommend that you complete the free RStudio Primers, which can be supplemented by the open access book R for Data Science by Garrett Grolemund and Hadley Wickham. RStudio Primers cover 6 topics: The Basics, Working with Data, Visualize Data, Tidy Your Data, Iterate, and Write Functions. If you already feel comfortable with these topics (either in R or some other language), then you do not need to complete these Primers.

If you would like more practice after completing the RStudio Primers, some other materials that we can recommend are:

R for Social Science, Data Carpentry.

Introduction to R for Social Scientists, Taught by Charles Lanfear at University of Washington. This course includes videos of lectures, slides, and assignments.

Learn R, Code Academy.

Reading List

The Summer Institute will bring together people from many fields, and therefore we think that asking you to do some reading before you arrive will help us use our time together more effectively. First, we ask you to read Matt’s book, Bit by Bit: Social Research in the Digital Age (Read online or purchase from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, or Princeton University Press), which is a broad introduction to computational social science. Parts of this book will be review for most of you, but if we all read this book ahead of time, then we can use our time together for more advanced topics.

Also, for students with little or no exposure to sociology, economics, or political science, we have assembled a collection of exemplary papers in the core areas addressed by the Russell Sage Foundation. Neither your work nor the work we develop together at the institute need map neatly onto these categories, but if those with less exposure to social science read these, we will increase the chances of interdisciplinary cross-pollination, which we view as critical to the future of computational social science.

Future of Work

Behavioral Economics

Race, Ethnicity, and Immigration

Social Inequality

Schedule and materials

- This is a preliminary schedule and may be subject to change.

Monday June 17, 2019 - Introduction and Ethics

  • 8:30 - 9:00 Welcome & Breakfast (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 9:00 - 9:25 Introductions (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 9:30 - 10:00 Introduction to Computational Social Science

  • 10:00 - 10:30 Why SICSS?

  • 10:30 - 10:45 Coffee Break

  • 10:45 - 11:30 Ethics: Principles-based approach

  • 11:30 - 12:15 Four areas of difficulty: informed consent, informational risk, privacy, and making decisions in the face of uncertainty

  • 12:15 - 12:30 Introduction to the group exercise

  • 12:30 -1:30 Lunch (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 1:30 - 3:45 Group exercise (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 3:45 - 4:00 Break

  • 4:00 - 5:30 Guest speaker

  • 5:30 - 6:30 Refreshments and Discussion

Tuesday June 18, 2019 - Collecting Digital Trace Data

  • 8:30 - 9:00 Welcome, Breakfast & Logistics (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 9:15 - 9:30 What is digital trace data?

  • 9:30 - 9:45 Strengths and weakness of digital trace data

  • 9:45 - 10:15 Screen-Scraping

  • 10:15 - 10:30 Coffee Break

  • 10:30 - 11:00 Application Programming Interfaces

  • 11:00 - 12:30 Building Apps and Bots for Social Science Research

  • 12:30 - 1:30 Lunch (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 1:30 - 3:45 Group Exercise (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 3:45 - 4:00 Break

  • 4:00 - 5:30 Guest speaker

  • 5:30 - 6:30 Refreshments and Discussion

Wednesday June 19, 2019 - Automated Text Analysis

  • 8:30 - 9:15 Welcome, Breakfast & Logistics (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 9:15 - 9:30 History of quantitative text analysis

  • 9:30 - 9:45 Basic Text Analysis/GREP

  • 9:45 - 10:00 Dictionary-Based Text Analysis

  • 10:00 - 10:15 Coffee Break

  • 10:15 - 11:15 Topic models/Structural Topic Models

  • 11:15 - 11:20 Break

  • 11:20 - 12:30 Text Networks

  • 12:30 - 1:30 Lunch (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 1:30 - 4:00 Group Exercise (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 4:00 - 5:30 Guest speaker

  • 5:30 - 6:30 Refreshments and Discussion

Thursday June 20, 2019 - Surveys in the Digital Age

  • 8:30 - 9:15 Welcome, Breakfast & Logistics (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 9:15 - 9:45 Survey research in the digital age

  • 9:45 - 10:15 Probability and non-probability sampling

  • 10:15 - 10:30 Coffee break

  • 10:30 - 11:00 Computer-administered interviews and wiki surveys

  • 11:00 - 11:30 Combining surveys and big data

  • 11:30 - 12:00 Group exercise introduction

  • 12:00 - 12:30 Begin group exercise

  • 12:30 - 1:30 Lunch (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 1:30 - 3:15 Continue group exercise (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 3:15 - 3:45 Discuss activity and open-source data

  • 3:45 - 4:00 Break

  • 4:00 - 5:30 Guest speaker

  • 5:30 - 6:30 Refreshments and Discussion

Friday June 21, 2019 - Mass Collaboration

  • 8:30 - 9:15 Welcome, Breakfast & Logistics (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 9:15 - 9:30 Mass collaboration

  • 9:30 - 9:45 Human computation

  • 9:45 - 10:00 Open call

  • 10:00 - 10:15 Distributed data collection

  • 10:15 - 10:30 Coffee break

  • 10:30 - 11:30 Introduction to the Fragile Families Challenge

  • 11:30 - 12:30 Working on the Fragile Families Challenge (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 12:30 - 1:30 Lunch (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 1:30 - 3:30 Fragile Families Challenge (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 3:30 - 3:45 Discussion of the Fragile Families Challenge (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 3:45 - 4:00 Break

  • 4:00 - 5:30 Guest speaker

  • 5:30 - 6:30 Refreshments and Discussion

Saturday June 22, 2019 - Day Off

Sunday June 23, 2019 - Day Off

Monday June 24, 2019 - Experiments

  • 8:30 - 9:15 Welcome, Breakfast & Logistics (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 9:15 - 9:30 What, why, and which experiments?

  • 9:30 - 9:45 Moving beyond simple experiments

  • 9:45 - 10:15 Four strategies for experiments

  • 10:15 - 10:30 Coffee break

  • 10:30 - 11:00 Zero variable cost data and musiclab

  • 11:00 - 11:15 Break

  • 11:15 - 12:15 3 Rs

  • 12:15 - 12:30 Logistics (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 12:30 -1:30 Lunch (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 1:30 - 4:00 Work on Group Projects (Not open to public/No livestream)

Tuesday June 25, 2019 - Work on group projects

  • 8:30 - 9:00 Welcome, Breakfast & Logistics (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 9:00 - 12:15 Work on Group Projects (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 12:30 -1:30 Lunch adn Flash Talks (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 1:30 - 4:00 Work on Group Projects (Not open to public/No livestream)

Wednesday June 26, 2019 - Work on group projects

  • 8:30 - 9:00 Welcome, Breakfast & Logistics (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 9:00 - 12:15 Work on Group Projects (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 12:30 -1:30 Lunch and Flash Talks(Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 1:30 - 4:00 Work on Group Projects (Not open to public/No livestream)

Thursday June 27, 2019 - Work on group projects

  • 8:30 - 9:00 Welcome, Breakfast & Logistics (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 9:00 - 12:15 Work on Group Projects (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 12:30 -1:30 Lunch and Flash Talks (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 1:30 - 4:00 Work on Group Projects (Not open to public/No livestream)

Friday June 28, 2019 - Present group projects

  • 8:30 - 9:00 Welcome, Breakfast & Logistics (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 9:00 - 12:15 Work on Group Projects (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 12:30 -1:00 Lunch (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 1:00 - 4:30 Present group projects (Not open to public/No livestream)

  • 4:30 - 6:00 Closing Reception