Big data skills in the social sciences

Time: 12:00 - 16:00

Venue: Boardroom, Arthur Lewis Building, University of Manchester

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Organised by the Data, Skills and Training research group at the Cathie Marsh Institute for Social Research (CMIST), this event is aimed at social science researchers or lecturers with limited knowledge of big data. 

Many new sources of data have become available for studying individuals and society in recent years.  Social media data, transaction information, administrative data, sensor data and other new sources of data have huge potential for social scientists to learn more about how people interact, what they buy, where they go and many other aspects of society for which there was previously little data. 

Many of the skills that are needed in this new environment are not ones that social scientists have traditionally learned.  For example, dealing with very large datasets, collecting data from websites, storing and manipulating very large datasets, dealing with different kinds of data e.g. structured vs unstructured data and deriving information from the data using appropriate analyses.

This event aims to discuss what new skills are needed to do social science research using these new forms of data and the challenges of acquiring these skills.