What research do we want to do in the future?

By Simon J Lock, on 4 October 2012

After a brief hiatus over the summer we’re forging on with the social media project and ready to get on with doing new things.  Below are the collated results from our kick-off meeting on what areas of new research, and research questions, participants wanted to see being explored at UCL in the future.

  • Database management
  • Engagement on Wikipedia (case study of health)
  • Private companies’ use of growing amount of web/social/public data
  • Algorithms and social behavior
  • Business innovation and digital technology research
  • Doing anthropology/ethnography of social media companies
  • Illegal logging evidence
  • location mapping as social tools to support communities and inventory of indigenous resources
  • social networking amongst scientists (e.g. myexperiment)
  • Applied location-based social networks
  • Navigability of online networks and cues to relevance of attention
  • Information resources for new members
  • Digital archives
  • The notion of privacy in the area of social networks
  • Micropublication in science
  • Enterprise social networks
  • Presentation of self, digital identities, ‘external’ and ‘internal’ networks
  • Using mobile phones for social networks – open source software and CIC funding
  • Sentiment analysis of content
  • Meshwork vs. networks in social media
  • Translocal solidarity on social media
  • Developing a way of responding to a suicidal crisis via social media
  • Impact of crowdsourced datasets (assembled by the public) on the ‘authority’ f professional academic interpretation/explanation
  • Co-creation of content with community groups via social media
  • Opinion mining – automatic analysis
  • Digital museums and archives and social media
  • Student engagement in social media for teaching
  • Academic social networking
  • Use of social media in UCL
  • The language of social media (how they affect the way language is used)

Other questions raised in discussion

  • Can UCL gain access to government open data sets?
  • How can we we all share data at UCL? Can we catalogue what data already exists?
  • The underlying private/corporate ownership of social media
  •  The role of the user as a commodity
  • What do people understand by privacy?
  • How does social media affect the student body? Does it affect campus behaviour?

What do you think? Any other things we might want to research collectively? Please post any comments or thoughts.

Coming up next: let’s get some research working groups going!