Recent Bulletins

QSS Postdoc accepts position at Texas A&M
Posted on: 01/02/2018

Erik Peterson, currently a post-doctoral fellow in the Program in Quantitative Social Science, recently accepted an offer to become Assistant Professor of Political Science at Texas A&M University. After undergraduate education at Northwestern University, where Erik wrote a thesis under the supervision of Professor Jamie Druckman, Erik received his doctorate in political science from Stanford University.  He has been at Dartmouth since the fall of 2017.

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Among other things, Erik is working on projects that seek to identify the effects of cuts in newsroom reporting on democracy.  Erik is also conducting research with Assistant Professor of Government, and QSS Director of Undergraduate Research, Sean Westwood on projects designed to identity the origins of affective polarization.

According to Professor Westwood, "Erik exemplifies the kind of scholar we are trying to foster within QSS: a social scientist who uses cutting-edge methods to explore major questions."

William Clark, Head of the Department of Political Science at Texas A&M, described Erik as "energetic, well-trained, and extremely prolific."  He suggested that Erik "will play an important role in our recently created research program in Political Behavior and Political Institutions and should also have lots of opportunities to collaborate with scholars in Psychology, Communication Studies, and Behavioral Economics."

QSS congratulates Erik on his new faculty position!  Erik will be starting at A&M in the summer of 2018 and until that time will be working on his research at Dartmouth.

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Using the Tools of Quantitative Social Science to Study Fake News
Posted on: 11/14/2017

Using new data collection technologies, QSS steering committee members Brenda Nyhan and Yusaku Horiuchi, with Dartmouth undergraduate students from Nyhan’s “Experiments in Politics” course, have been able to contribute to social science research on the prevalence and effect of fake news and fact checking. A recent Dartmouth News story, “Dartmouth Scholar Is at the Center of the Fake News Debate” highlights Professor Nyhan and his work.

QSS DUR harnesses machine learning to analyze complex experimental designs
Posted on: 11/14/2017

Assistant Professor of Government Sean Westwood and coauthors recently released a new statistical method that harnesses machine learning to analyze complex experimental designs.  Their method was published in Political Analysis, the top methodology journal in political science.  With his colleagues, Westwood, the Director of Undergraduate Research in the Program in Quantitative Social Science, showed that it is possible to utilize a super-learner to estimate the effects of heterogenous treatments on respondents' attitudes.  Their method also allows for the analysis of heterogeneous responses to treatments.

3rd Day in a Row: QSS Steering Committee Member featured Quote of the Day
Posted on: 11/08/2017

Daniel Rockmore, William H. Neukom 1964 Distinguished Professor of Computational Science, associate dean for the sciences, and QSS Steering committee member, was quoted in the VOX daily discussing the Neukom Institute for Computational Science's new literary prize. "It's in the future but it feels like it's not too far away. With just a few sort of shifts of the parameters, one might say, we might actually be there tomorrow. ... I think science and technology has a significant influence on the way that kind of stuff gets written." The quote comes from an interview on Vermont Public Radio, "New Literary Prize From Dartmouth To Award Works Set In The 'Near Future'"

2nd day in a row: QSS Steering Committee Member Featured Quote of the Day
Posted on: 11/07/2017

Government professor and QSS Steering committee member Brendan Nyan was quoted in the VOX daily speaking about the Trump administration "Threats to the rule of law often start with these softer kinds of actions, these norms that grow weaker." This quote comes from an article on entitiled "Trump talks like a strongman. Good thing he’s governing like a weak man: Analysis"

QSS Steering Committee Member VOX quote of the day
Posted on: 11/06/2017

Economist and QSS Steering Committee member Andrew Samwick was highlightedin the November 6 VOX Daily. "Well-designed tax policies have the potential to raise economic growth. But there are many stumbling blocks along the way and certainly no guarantee that all tax changes will improve economic performance," writes the the Sandra L. and Arthur L. Irving '72a P'10 Professor of Economics and director of the Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and a co-author in a study cited by the newspaper. The quote came from a November 2 article in the Christian Science Monitor "Republicans pitch broad tax cuts. Is that what economy needs?"

QSS program sees major growth
Posted on: 11/03/2017

In a November 3 article "QSS program sees increase in popularity," QSS chair Michael Herron discusses the growth in the program with The Dartmouth.

QSS students and faculty investigte the believability of fake news
Posted on: 10/24/2017

Three papers co-authored by QSS students and steering committee members investigate individuals' likelihood to be skeptical of false news. In thier paper "Media Source, Selective Exposure, and Susceptibility to False Information," Dartmouth students Katherine Clayton, Jase Davis, and Kristen Hinckley, with Professor Yusaku Horiuchi, investigate whether citizens' are more likely to believe false information based on the source of the news piece. In "Counting the Pinocchios: The Effect of Summary Fact-Checking Data on Perceived Accuracy and Favorability of Politicians," students Alexander Agadjanian, Nikita Bakhru, Victoria Chi, Devyn Greenberg, Byrne Hollander, Alexander Hurt, Joseph Kind, Ray Lu, Annie Ma, Daniel Pham, Michael Qian, Mackinley Tan, Clara Wang, Alexander  Wasdahl, and Alexandra Woodruff, with Professor Brendan Nyhan, study the effects of summary fact-checking (assessing the accuracy of politicians over time) on the favorability rating of those politicians. And in "Real Solutions for Fake News? Measuring the Effectiveness of General Warnings and Fact-Check Banners in Reducing Belief in False Stories on Social Media," Professor Nyhan worked with students Spencer Blair, Jonathan A. Busam, Katherine Clayton, Samuel Forstner, John Glance, Guy Green, Anna Kawata, Akhila Kovvuri, Jonathan Martin, Evan Morgan, Morgan Sandhu, Rachel Sang, Rachel Scholz-Bright, Austin T. Welch, Andrew G. Wolff, and Amanda Zhou explore the effectiveness of various strategies that could be used by social media platforms to counter fake news. Professors Nyan and Horiuchi also discussed these findings in an Upshot article, "Why the Fact-Checking at Facebook Needs to Be Checked" and a Monkey Cage article "Homegrown ‘fake news’ is a bigger problem than Russian propaganda. Here’s a way to make falsehoods more costly for politicians."

Dartmouth News Highlights QSS Program
Posted on: 10/24/2017

In a recent article, the Dartmouth News talks about the growing influence of data and the key role Quantitaive Social Science plays in understanding and interpreting the data in fields from politics to sports.

The D interviews QSS Director of Undergraduate Research
Posted on: 10/18/2017

QSS Director of Undergradate Sean Westwood talks about his interests and research in a Q&A with Grace Stillwell