The Social Science and Social Media Collaborative

Have established models of social and political processes lost their predictive power?

Recent events, such as incorrect predictions of the 2016 election outcome and the spread of misinformation, present an opportunity to challenge old models with new sources of data.

The abundance of data from social media presents an opportunity to understand social and political trends better.

But first, researchers must address issues concerning the use of this data. Is it representative? Are users honest about their thoughts? Is the collection and processing of the data unbiased and accurate?

This study incorporates five parallel projects to address these issues and harness the opportunity to use new data to gain a better understanding of social and political phenomena.


Methodological issues surrounding social surveys and from social media

Political Communication

Political communication patterns and their effects on political choices and behavior in the 2016 and 2020 presidential elections


Parenting information and misinformation shared through online and social communication


What types of misinformation “sticks” and how does it spread on social media

Economic Indicators

Developing economic indicators using social media data

Each of the five projects have specific substantive focus areas, but are linked through the use of data science methods, big data resources, and the use of high performance computing.

What’s New

New Publication: The Stability of Economic Correlations over Time

New Publication: The Stability of Economic Correlations over Time

A new paper examining the use of Twitter data has been published in Public Opinion Quarterly. The study uses knowledge of the processes generating Twitter data to develop and test hypotheses for when social media and survey data might align, and thus when social media processes may reflect survey measures.

Conference: S3MC Presentations at DEVSEC18

Conference: S3MC Presentations at DEVSEC18

Researchers affiliated with S3MC gave several presentations at DEVSEC: Conference on the Use of Secondary and Open Source Data in Developmental Science in Phoenix, Arizona, October 4-6, 2018.