Helen Margetts will speak about Political Turbulence at Green Templeton College on Monday 1 February 2016. Her talk is entitled, “Politics by numbers: How social media shape collective action” and forms part of the Green Templeton Lecture series 2016 whose theme is Living by Numbers: Big Data and Society. The talk is from 18:00 to 19:00 in the E P Abraham Lecture Theatre and registration via email to events@gtc.ox.ac.uk is essential.

The talk is the second of four lectures in the Green Templeton Lecture series 2016 whose theme is Living by Numbers: Big Data and Society. The series asks: what is the digital future and how will it significantly change our lives? and aims to raise questions about the nature of developments associated with the availability and analysis of large datasets (big data) and the implications for core aspects of everyday life.

In this lecture, Professor Helen Margetts, Director of the Oxford Internet Institute and Professor of Society and the Internet will talk about how the Internet and social media can bring political change, allowing ‘tiny acts’ of political participation which can scale up to large-scale mobilisation of millions—but mostly fail. These new forms of mobilisation increase instability and uncertainty in political systems, challenging policy-makers in both democratic and authoritarian regimes. But they also generate new sources of large-scale data. Drawing on research carried out for the new book Political Turbulence: How Social Media Shape Collective Action, this lecture discusses how social media is changing political systems—and how data science tools and methodologies might be used to understand, explain and even predict the new ‘political turbulence’.


Note: This post was originally published on the Political Turbulence book blog on . It might have been updated since then in its original location. The post gives the views of the author(s), and not necessarily the position of the Oxford Internet Institute.