Dr Martin Dittus

Researcher and data scientist in social computing. Mass-participation platforms, large-scale data analysis and visualisation, community engagement and crowdsourcing, social implications of emerging technologies.

Email: martin.dittus@oii.ox.ac.uk

Martin Dittus is a data scientist and researcher with more than a decade of experience in social computing, mass-participation platforms, and big data. In his research he applies quantitative and statistical methods, augmented with deep domain understanding, to analyse and visualise emerging online practices at large scale. At the Oxford Internet Institute he is researching the economic geography of darknet market places: mapping, visualising, and analysing market data, helping to better understand the implications of the practice.

Martin has worked with a wide range of online platforms and community organisations, and has much experience in matters of collective governance, collective resource management, community engagement, and related topics. He has produced research for the Humanitarian OpenStreetmap Team, a large crowdsourcing community where volunteers produce maps for humanitarian purposes; and for Cosm (formerly Pachube), one of the first collective data-gathering platforms for DIY environmental sensing.

Martin has published in top-tier academic venues. In 2017, his research was awarded Honorable Mention at the ACM conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW), in recognition of the quality of his work, and its significance for the field.

He is currently completing an engineering doctorate (EngD) in computer science at University College London (UCL), and was awarded a masters degree at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis (CASA) at UCL. From 2006, he was employed as a software developer and project manager at Last.fm, an online music platform with millions of participants, and one of the first commercial users of modern big data technologies.

Martin is the chairman of Local Welcome, a brand new charity building community and solidarity in the 21st century. Previously he was a director and trustee at the London Hackspace, a non-profit community workshop space which grew from a pub meet-up to a large volunteer organisation with 1,200 members and growing. He has worked as an organiser and facilitator at Occupy London, the Hack the Barbican arts and technology festival, the Electromagnetic Field camping festival, the Air Quality Egg DIY sensing community, and others.

Research Interests:

Mass-participation platforms, community engagement, social implications of internet technology.

Positions held at the OII:

  • Data Scientist, May 2017 –

Latest blog posts

Current projects

  • Internet Geographies Leverhulme Prize

    Participants: Prof Mark Graham, Dr Martin Dittus

    As digital augmentations of our world become ever more embedded into everyday life, this project asks where they are, what they are, and who owns, controls, and can shape them.

Past projects

  • Economic Geographies of the Darknet

    Participants: Professor Mark Graham, Dr Joss Wright, Martin Dittus

    This project investigates the economic geographies of illegal economic activities in anonymous internet marketplaces.


Conference papers

  • Knowledge Equity and Spatial Justice on Wikipedia

    Recorded: 20 July 2018

    Duration: 00:55:32

    Wikimania 2018, the annual global gathering of the Wikipedia community, took place in Cape Town in July. The keynote speaker on the first day was OII digital geographer Dr Martin Dittus, who presented new work produced with Professor Mark Graham.