Mittwoch, 6. August 2014

(Web) Social Sciences Methodology

Source and copyright: Sage Pub. ltd.
The field of social sciences focusing on the Internet has grown dramatically over the last five to ten years, and so have the corresponding methods. For anybody interested in starting his or her own research project in Internet social sciences I recommend Robert Ackland's 2013 book "Web social sciences: concepts data and tools for social scientists in the digital age."

This book offers a starting point for many of the discussions going on in the social sciences dealing with the Internet and gives an excellent overview of the different methods that are available to social scientists looking at the web. It gives the pro and cons as well as the current state of the discussion and development - with an extensive literature list of the main works for the respective research techniques and questions up to 2010/11. It also offers a particularly good introduction into the study of social networks and a first overview of some of the questions dealing with ecommerce and online marketing (incl. Long Tail and recommendation systems).

So, any of you who are thinking of writing a bachelor, master or even a doctoral thesis in the field of (Web) Social Sciences should start by looking through Ackland's book - if anything as a starting position for further detailed literature research. It is a most valuable point of departure for your choice of methodology.

Photo: slightly digitally treated bookcover of Robert Ackland (2013): Web social sciences - concepts data and tools for social scientists in the digital age; Sage Publications Ltd., London. Source and copyright of original: Sage Pub. ltd.

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