June 11 to June 21 2024 | University of Bologna


From June 11 to June 21 2024, the Department of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Bologna will sponsor the Summer Institute in Computational Social Science, to be held at the University of Bologna. The purpose of the Summer Institute is to bring together graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, and beginning faculty interested in computational social science. The Summer Institute is for both social scientists (broadly conceived) and data scientists (broadly conceived).

This year’s edition will have a particular focus on the issue of political polarization. In recent years, the study of political polarization has become increasingly imperative for comprehending the intricate dynamics characterising modern political discourse in Western societies and relevant against the background of big societal issues such as climate change and democratic erosion. Participants will thus be instructed to implement the methodological toolbox of computational social science in group projects with the other participants on the topic of political polarization. The program will conclude with presentations of the group projects.

The instructional program will involve lectures, group problem sets, and participant-led research projects. There will also be outside speakers who conduct computational social science research in a variety of settings, such as academia, industry, and government. Topics covered include text analysis, website scraping, digital field experiments, machine learning, and ethics. There will be ample opportunities for students to discuss their ideas and research with the organizers, other participants, and visiting speakers. Because we are committed to open and reproducible research, all materials created by faculty and students for the Summer Institute will be released open source. The first week will be online while the second will be held in person in Bologna, Italy.

Participation is restricted to Ph.D. students, postdoctoral researchers, and untenured faculty within 7 years of their Ph.D. We welcome applicants from all backgrounds and fields of study, especially applicants from groups currently under-represented in computational social science. About twelve (12) participants will be invited, and participants are expected to fully attend and participate in the entire two-week program.

NB: The first week will be hosted online. The second week will be in person at the University of Bologna. Participants are expected to travel to Bologna to attend the second week. Please note that while we cannot cover travel or accommodation costs, we will provide lunch and coffee breaks, and a welcome dinner.

Application materials are due April 25 (12 pm, GMT+1).

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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