How to become a computational social scientist



Organised by:

UK Data Service


Louise Capener


Entry (no or almost no prior knowledge)


Emma Green

video conference logo

Venue: Online


Scientific research and teaching are increasingly influenced by computational tools, methods and paradigms. The social sciences are no different, with many new forms of social data only available or practical through computational means (Kitchen, 2014).

While social science research has always been marked by technological approaches to some degree, the field of computational social science involves the use of tools, data and methods that require a different skill set and mindset.

This free workshop is an introduction to computational social science. It offers attendees a chance to understand and discuss what computational social science is, what it is good for, how to become a computational social scientist, and the basic steps to follow in an ideal computational social science research project.

The workshop intersperses instruction with discussion and gives participants the chance to develop a research project idea through several steps. The workshop is suitable for absolute beginners and NO CODING SKILLS are required.

Presenter: Louise Capener

Kitchen, R. (2014). Big Data, new epistemologies and paradigm shifts. Big Data & Society,

Level: Any level, from absolute beginner to statistics whiz
Experience/knowledge required: No specific knowledge required, but it will make much more sense if you currently (or plan to) conduct social science research
Target audience: Social scientists who are interested in or confused by what computational and empirical social science is about, or who know they want to start doing more computational work but don’t know how to get started

We will be using Mentimeter to ask questions in this workshop so you may benefit from having a second device ready for this, such as a smartphone.

This event is part of our UK Data Service introductory training series: Spring 2023.

This event will be livestreamed on our UK Data Service YouTube channel but the chat will be disabled. By registering and attending the Zoom event you will be able to ask questions and interact.

Recordings of UK Data Service events are made available on our YouTube channel and, together with the slides, on our past events pages soon after the event has taken place.



Website and registration:


North West


Data Collection, Data Quality and Data Management , ICT and Software

Related publications and presentations:

Data Collection
Data Quality and Data Management
ICT and Software

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