June 10 to June 21, 2024 | Amsterdam | University of Amsterdam, Netherlands


The Summer Institute will bring together people from many fields and backgrounds. In order to use our time together efficiently, there are a number of things that you should do before participating in SICSS-Amsterdam 2024.

  • Complete the pre-read
  • Prepare your computing environment
  • Complete coding bootcamps (if needed)


In order to prepare for SICSS-Amsterdam 2024, you should read Matt Salganik’s book, Bit by Bit: Social Research in the Digital Age (Read online or purchase from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, or Princeton University Press). Parts of this book, which is a broad introduction to computational social science, 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.

Computing environment

Please note that the coding work presented at SICSS-Amsterdam 2024 will employ a mix of R and Python. You are welcome to employ a language of your choice for each activity (such as Python for R content, R for Python content, or even completely different languages used by computational social scientists such as Julia). However, the support we can provide in these cases is limited.

Before SICSS you should install a modern, stable-release version of R and RStudio as well as Python. You should be familiar with Jupyter Notebooks, but you may also use other IDEs such as Rstudio, VS Code or Spyder.

Please make sure you have sufficient knowledge of both R and Python before the Summer Institute; there are two bootcamps to provide sufficient skills in both languages.

SICCS R Boot Camp

The SICSS Boot Camp is an online training program created by Chris Bail to provide you with beginner level skills in coding so that you can follow the more advanced curriculum we teach at SICSS. The videos and materials are designed for complete beginners and are best viewed as a sequence since each video builds upon content introduced in previous tutorials. If you are already familiar with the topics in these videos, you do not need to complete them.

If you would like more practice after completing the Boot Camp videos, some other materials that we can recommend are:

Python Boot Camp

The Odissei SICSS team in Rotterdam is organizing a Python boot camp (more info to follow soon) with the goal to provide a sufficient level of Python to follow the curriculum of the Summer Institute. We may ask you, depending on your Python level, to follow this bootcamp to prepare for the Summer Institute.

Host a Location

You can host a partner location of the Summer Institutes of Computational Social Science (SICSS) at your university, company, NGO, or government agency.

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