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CDSC members at Pok Pok in March 2017. Clockwise from top left: Sneha, Mako, Aaron, Emilia, Nate, Jeremy, Sayamindu, Salt.

The Community Data Science Collective is an interdisciplinary research group made of up of faculty and students at the University of Washington Department of Communication and the Northwestern University Department of Communication Studies.

We are social scientists applying a range of quantitative and qualitative methods to the study of online communities. We seek to understand both how and why some attempts at collaborative production — like Wikipedia and Linux — build large volunteer communities and high quality work products.

Our research is particularly focused on how the design of communication and information technologies shape fundamental social outcomes with broad theoretical and practical implications — like an individual’s decision to join a community, contribute to a public good, or a group’s ability to make decisions democratically.

Our research is deeply interdisciplinary, most frequently consists of “big data” quantitative analyses, and lies at the intersection of communication, sociology, and human-computer interaction.

Workshops and Courses[edit]

In addition to research, we run workshops and teach classes. Some of that work is coordinated on this wiki. A more detailed lists of workshops and teaching material on this wikis is on our Workshops and Classes page. In this page, we only list ongoing classes and workshops.

Public Data Science Workshops[edit]

Community Data Science Workshops — The Community Data Science Workshops (CDSW) are a series of workshops designed to introduce some of the basic tools of programming and analysis of data from online communities to absolute beginners. The CDSW have been held roughly twice a year since beginning in Seattle in 2014. So far, more than 100 people have volunteered their weekends to teach more than 500 people to program in Python, to build datasets from Web APIs, and to ask and answer questions using these data.

University of Washington Courses[edit]

  • [Fall 2017] DATA512: Human Centered Data Science — Fundamental principles of data science and its human implications. Data ethics; data privacy; differential privacy; algorithmic bias; legal frameworks and intellectual property; provenance and reproducibility; data curation and preservation; user experience design and usability testing for big data; ethics of crowdwork; data communication; and societal impacts of data science.

Northwestern Courses & Workshop[edit]

Research Resources[edit]

If you are a member of the collective, perhaps you're looking for CommunityData:Resources which includes details on email, TeX templates, documentation on our computing resources, etc.

Research News[edit]

Follow us as @comdatasci on Twitter and subscribe to the Community Data Science Collective blog.

Recent posts from the blog include:

Introduction to R workshop
I recently taught a two-session workshop introducing R to Kellogg MBA students. I had  a few goals for the workshops: Convince students of the benefits of using text-based programming for data exploration and analysis Introduce basic programming concepts (e.g., variables, functions) Give students a basic understanding of how to do some fundamental data analysis tasks …

— Jeremy Foote

http://www.jeremydfoote.com 2017-11-16
Peer production between real utopia and naive Coaseanism?
Over at Crooked Timber, Henry Farrell and others recently held a book seminar to discuss Cory Doctorow’s Walkaway. The symposium led to an extended discussion between Henry, Cory, Henry again, and Yochai Benkler about Benkler’s early work on commons-based peer production, spaces of resistance in the contemporary information economy, and the state of peer production a …

— Aaron Shaw

http://aaronshaw.org 2017-10-28
Ants!
I recently read Deborah M. Gordon’s Ant Encounters and thought I’d summarize some thoughts about it. Gordon is a Professor of Biology at Stanford. The book pulls together several decades of research (hers and others’) on the behavior and ecology of ants. In it, Gordon makes nuanced claims about the importance of communication and interaction …

— Aaron Shaw

http://aaronshaw.org 2017-10-11
OpenSym 2017 Program Published
A few hours ago, OpenSym 2017 kicked off in Galway. For those that don’t know, OpenSym is the International Symposium on Wikis and Open Collaboration (it was called WikiSym until 2014). Its the premier academic venue focused on research on wikis, open collboration, and peer production. This year, Claudia Müller-Birn and I served as co-chairs …

— Benjamin Mako Hill

http://mako.cc 2017-08-23


About This Wiki[edit]

This is open to the public and hackable by all but mostly contains information that will be useful to collective members, their collaborators, people enrolled in their projects, or people interested in building off of their work. If you're interested in making a change or creating content here, generally feel empowered to Be Bold. If things don't fit, somebody who watches this wiki will be in touch.

This is mostly a normal MediaWiki although there are a few things to know:

  • There's a CAPTCHA enabled. If you create an account and then contact any collective member with the username (on or off wiki), they can turn the CAPTCHA off for you.
  • Extension:Math is installed so you can write math here. Basically you just add math by putting TeX inside <nowiki> tags like this: <math>\frac{\sigma}{\sqrt{n}}</math>