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We're pleased to announce the program for the 2nd Annual Politics and Computational Social Science (PACSS) Conference to be held Wednesday August 28 @ Georgetown University.  

Details are below and at https://mccourt.georgetown.edu/PaCSS

Register for the conference at our registration page.  Registration is $50 before August 12, 2019 and $100 after that. Seating is limited, so please register early to ensure space.  The conference includes breakfast, lunch, coffee, snacks and a reception with bar and hors d’ oeuvres.

Pew Research Center is pleased to host two parallel training workshops at their office in downtown D.C. These workshops will focus on two key areas: 1) natural language (NLP) processing techniques and their application to social science questions; and 2) deep learning techniques with applications to image analysis for social scientists. Participants will be given hands-on experience building and training models in these subject areas and will also be able to meet members of Pew Research Center’s Data Labs team. Workshops will run from 2pm to 5pm Tuesday August 27. Light snacks and coffee will be provided. Cost per participant is $25.

Preliminary Conference Program: Wednesday, August 28, 2019

**Exact times subject to change - please check final schedule to be posted later**  


Welcoming Remarks


Networks  |  Social Media  |  NLP




Methods in CSS  |  The News  |  Image


Lunch & Business Meeting


IR  |  Journalism  |  Video






Poster Sessions & Reception




  • Legislative communication style: linking legislators across medium and message
    Rachel Blum, Miami University
  • Network Event History Analysis for Modeling Public Policy Adoption with Latent Diffusion Networks
    Bruce Desmarais, Pennsylvania State University
  • Target Policymaking Under the Frame of Dark Networks: Strengths, Weaknesses and Opportunities
    Joseph Shaheen, George Mason University
  • Failure to Communicate: Individual Reasoning Structure and Deliberative Outcomes
    Sarah Shugars, Northeastern University

Social Media:

  • Knowledge Decays: Temporal Validity in Online Social Science
    Kevin Munger, Penn State University
  • Social Media Markets for Survey Research in Comparative Contexts: Facebook Users in Kenya
    Leah Rosenzweig, Institute for Advanced Study in Toulouse (IAST)
  • The Influencer Ecosystem in the 2018 U.S. Primaries
    Yotam Shmargad, University of Arizona
  • Journalists on Twitter: Self-branding, Audiences, and Involvement of Bot
    Onur Varol, Northeastern University


  • A Bayesian Transition Network Topic Model for Inferring Conceptual Networks
    Nick Beauchamp, Northeastern University
  • The Mechanics of Emergent Political Voice
    Amy Magnus, Air Force Institute of Technology  
  • Humans and Machines Learning Together
    Stuart Shulman, Texifter
  • The Digital Pulpit: A Nationwide Analysis of Online Sermons
    Dennis Quinn, Pew Research Center


Methods in Conputational Social Science:

  • 311: What's Your Emergency?
    Rebekah Getman, Northeastern University
  • Shifting Sands: An Agent-Based Model of Mobilization Against a Central Authority
    Soha Hammam, Claremont Graduate University
  • Analyzing Link Sharing Across Platforms to Study Political Messaging and Ideology
    Joshua Tucker, NYU
  • Event Data with Images
    Zachary Steinert-Threlkeld, UCLA

The News:

  • The Distorting Prism of Social Media: How Online Comments Amplify Toxicity
    Jin Woo Kim, Dartmouth College
  • Affective Polarization in Online Uncivil Comments
    Yujin Kim, University of Texas at Austin
  • Nationalized news: using large-scale collections of close captions text to identify national network stories in local news broadcasts
    Pavel Oleinikov, Wesleyan University
  • Measuring the European public sphere across multiple languages
    Maurits van der Veen, College of William & Mary


  • Ideological Scaling of Political Images
    Jason Anastasopoulos, University of Georgia
  • Using Computer Vision to Capture the Collective Perception of a Neighborhood
    Laura Nelson, Northeastern University  
  • How do Machines See Gender? Demystifying a machine vision system
    Emma Remy, Pew Research Center
  • Do Women Candidates “Run as Women” Online? An Automated Image and Text Analysis of Campaign Advertising on Facebook and TV
    Jielu Yao, Wesleyan University & University of Iowa



  • Text-Based Approaches to Analyzing Group Behavior in Conflict Setting
    Margaret Foster, Duke University
  • Where the money blows – Using speeches to identify the effect of Chinese foreign aid on the US-African relationship structure
    Dennis Hammerschmidt, University of Mannheim
  • Detecting Foreign Influence Operations’ Content on Social Media
    Meysam Alizadeh, Princeton University
  • Measuring a Threat Perception: Text Analysis of the Speech Records of the United Nations Security Council, 1994-2019
    Takuto Sakamoto, University of Tokyo


  • Systematic biases in local news search results: an audit study
    Sean Fischer, University of Pennsylvania
  • Can Digital Literacy Save Us from Fake News? Evidence from the U.S.
    Andy Guess, Princeton University
  • Online Information Seeking during the 2018 U.S. Congressional Elections
    Ronald Robertson, Northeastern University
  • How Does the Media Environment Affect Readership? Evidence from an App Patient-Preferred Trial in Italy
    Alessandro Vecchiato, Stanford


  • Automated Coding of Political Campaign Advertisement Videos: A Validation Study
    Wonjoon Hwang, Harvard University
  • Comparing Human and Machine Classification of Written and Video Records of Parliamentary Debates
    Christopher Cochrane, University of Toronto  
  • How Online Propaganda Radicalizes Foreign Citizens
    Tamar Mitts, Columbia University
  • Mapping Extremist Networks with Visual Imagery
    Rob Williams, UNC Chapel Hill


Attitudes & Beliefs:

  • Religiosity and Public Policy in Congress: Analyzing the partisan dimensions of legislators’ religious rhetoric
    Sarah Dreier, University of Washington
  • Gender Norms and Violent Behavior in a Virtual World
    Eric Dunford, Georgetown University
  • Ecologies of Online Contention: From Hate to Health
    Neil Johnson, George Washington University
  • Can Celebrities Reduce Prejudice? The Effect of Mohamed Salah on Islamophobic Attitudes and Behaviors
    Alexandra Siegel, Stanford University


  • Downsian Convergence on Non-Policy Issues: Evidence from Campaign Manifestos at French Legislative Elections
    Caroline Le Pennec, University of California, Berkeley
  • The Supply and Demand of Fact v. Opinion in Presidential Tweets
    Stan Oklobdzija, Claremont McKenna College
  • From Home Base to Swing States: Spatio-temporal Analysis of Political Advertising Strategies
    Piotr Sapiezynski, Northeastern University
  • Pandering Politicians: Ideological Changes from Primary to General Elections
    Ye Wang, New York University

Machine Learning:

  • Automated Visual Clustering: A Technique for Image Corpus Exploration and Annotation Cost Reduction
    Kevin Aslett, University of Washington
  • Active Learning for Probabilistic Record Linkage
    Ted Enamorado, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill  
  • Data-driven causal inference for applications in political economy
    Daniel Malinsky, Johns Hopkins University
  • A Computational Social Science Approach to Financial Regulation
    Sharyn O'Halloran, Columbia University

David Lazer

University Distinguished Professor of Political Science and Computer and Information Science, Northeastern University
Co-Director, NULab for Texts, Maps, and Networks:  http://www.northeastern.edu/nulab/
Visiting Scholar, Institute for Quantitative Social Science, Harvard University

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