Social Listening


What we are looking for:

We are looking for researchers that propose to work on the intersection of computer science and quantitative social science, bring together cutting edge methods in NLP and integrate this into quantitative work on social and political disruptions. A PostDoc that will join a research group between the IIIA (CSIC) and the IAE (CSIC) to investigate the use of text-based measures for social science research. Our team is actively engaged with policy makers in the UN, IMF and several working on stability. Through a recent ERC (Media, Economics and Geopolitics) we have access to the EMM data.


Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona, Spain

The context:


Social and political disruption is everywhere. Data from the Varieties of Democracy project shows that democratic institutions are under attack all over the world. Data by the Uppsala Data Program shows a clear upward trend in armed conflict events worldwide since the 2000s. Several countries are experiencing extreme levels of political polarization and economic inequality. Research in the Social Sciences is a key input to developing more robust societies in this context.

The problem to address:


We’re seeing a rapid increase in research opportunities due to the availability of diverse data sources like texts and images. One example is the Europe Media Monitor (EMM), which processes about 300,000 news articles daily. Advances in Large Language Models (LLMs) have greatly enhanced our ability to analyze these varied data sources. However, there’s a gap in how these advanced methods are applied in social sciences compared to computer science. Natural Language Processing (NLP) is a rapidly evolving field, yet its integration into social science research is still limited. The PostDoc’s proposal should focus on NLP methods and how to integrate them into social science research!


  • Develop NLP methods with the specific goal of integrating these methods in Social Science research.
  • Develop economics models that integrate text data in innovative ways to model political processes and conflict.


Expected Outcomes:

  • At least one research article using NLP to advance our understanding of political economy and social conflict.
  • At least one methodological paper on NLP for closer integration of NLP into social sciences.


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