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Big Data Challenges for the Social Sciences

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Big Data and Social Sciences
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Big Data Challenges for the Social Sciences

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Big Data: Challenges for the social sciences. Panel presentation at the World Social Science Forum, International Convention Centre, Durban, South Africa. Tuesday 15 September, 2015

Big Data: Challenges for the social sciences. Panel presentation at the World Social Science Forum, International Convention Centre, Durban, South Africa. Tuesday 15 September, 2015

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Big Data Challenges for the Social Sciences

  1. 1. What’s happening in the world of big data and the social sciences David De Roure, University of Oxford @dder
  2. 2. Research Councils UK
  3. 3. ESRC Big Data Network
  4. 4. The fourth quadrant More  people   More  machines   Big  Data   Big  Compute       Conven6onal     Computa6on               “Big  Social”   Social  Networks   e-­‐infrastructure   online   R&D   Big  Data   Produc6on   &  Analy6cs   deeply   about   society   The  future  
  5. 5. New Forms of Data •  Internet data, derived from social media and other online interactions (including data gathered by connected people and devices, eg mobile devices, wearable technology, Internet of Things) •  Tracking data, monitoring the movement of people and objects (including GPS/geolocation data, traffic and other transport sensor data, CCTV images etc) •  Satellite and aerial imagery (eg Google Earth, Landsat, infrared, radar mapping etc) hGp://www.oecd.org/s6/sci-­‐tech/new-­‐data-­‐for-­‐ understanding-­‐the-­‐human-­‐condi6on.htm  
  6. 6. House of Commons Inquiry http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/ science-and-technology-committee/news/report-responsible-use-of-data/ Traditional data storage systems were not designed for real-time analysis but new technologies can now provide live information and data analysis can accomplished in real-time. Social media data offers the possibility of studying social processes as they unfold at the level of populations as an alternative to traditional surveys or interviews. The data from social media is described as "qualitative data on a quantitative scale" and requires innovative analysis techniques. Traditional data storage systems were not designed for real-time analysis but new technologies can now provide live information and data analysis can accomplished in real-time. Social media data offers the possibility of studying social processes as they unfold at the level of populations as an alternative to traditional surveys or interviews. The data from social media is described as "qualitative data on a quantitative scale" and requires innovative analysis techniques.
  7. 7. New Social Processes FundraisingThroughDigital:Howclicktivists,slacktivistsand hacktivistsarehelpingusbeatcancersooner—MichaelDocherty Photographs:  Cancer  Research  UK  
  8. 8. Digital Marketing Ecosystem hGps://www.gartner.com/technology/research/digital-­‐marke6ng/transit-­‐map.jsp  
  9. 9. Citizen Science hGps://www.zooniverse.org/  
  10. 10. Social Media Triangle social  media  data   and  analy.cs   social  media  for   engagement  with   research   social  media     as  a  subject  of   research   Sam  McGregor  
  11. 11. A rehearsal for the future •  The Internet of Things describes a world in which everyday objects are connected to a network so that data can be shared •  But it is really as much about people as the inanimate object •  It is impossible to anticipate all the social changes that could be created by connecting billions of devices hGps://www.gov.uk/government/publica6ons/internet-­‐of-­‐things-­‐blackeG-­‐review  
  12. 12. New Forms of Data CDT New UK Centres for Doctoral Training in New Forms of Data and in Biosocial Research Much of the value of ‘new forms of data’ lie in the potential for them to be analysed in near real-time, which presents opportunities for revealing phenomena as they unfold, enabling timely response with immediate influence. Such analysis brings distinct new computational requirements, requires new skills, and makes new demands on the ease of use and capability of the national e-Infrastructure. hGp://www.esrc.ac.uk/funding-­‐and-­‐guidance/postgraduates/dtc/dtc-­‐ policy/commissioning-­‐of-­‐centres-­‐for-­‐doctoral-­‐training.aspx  
  13. 13. Big, Open, and Personal theODI.org
  14. 14. Social Machines Real life is and must be full of all kinds of social constraint – the very processes from which society arises. Computers can help if we use them to create abstract social machines on the Web: processes in which the people do the creative work and the machine does the administration... The stage is set for an evolutionary growth of new social engines. The ability to create new forms of social process would be given to the world at large, and development would be rapid. Berners-Lee, Weaving the Web, 1999 (pp. 172–175)
  15. 15. Observing Social Machines hGp://sociam.org/  
  16. 16. Methods of Observation Tarte,  S.  Willcox,  P.,  Glaser,  H.  and  De  Roure,  D.  2015.  Archetypal  Narra6ves  in  Social   Machines:  Approaching  Sociality  through  Prosopography.  ACM  Web  Science  2015.   Tiropanis,  T.,  Hall,  W.,  Shadbolt,  N.,  De  Roure,  D.,  Contractor,  N.  and  Hendler,  J.   2013.  The  Web  Science  Observatory,  IEEE  Intelligent  Systems  28(2)  pp  100–104.     Understanding the design and emergent behaviours of co-created sociotechnical constructions at scale Macroscope   Observatory   Prosopography  
  17. 17. Summary New forms of data enable us to: •  Observe social processes in new ways •  Study new social processes, e.g. social media •  Design new social processes, e.g. for citizen engagement at scale There are considerations of ethics and responsible innovation in each This is all a rehearsal for living in the Internet of Things
  18. 18. Thank You Thanks to Fiona Armstrong, Peter Elias, Wendy Hall, Chris Lintott, Sam McGregor, Nigel Shadbolt, Ségolène Tarte, Ramine Tinati, Thanassis Tiropanis, Max Van Cleek, and Pip Willcox Contact david.deroure@oerc.ox.ac.uk

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