We have two fully-funded PhD positions working together on an ERC funded project developing a NETWORK THEORY OF ATTITUDES.
The first position is for someone in the social sciences with an interest in social identity. Their PhD will explore how people use attitudes in networks to form/defend groups, and how these processes are vulnerable to bot influence. Click this link for more information on this position.
The second position is for someone interested in computational social science, network science, agent-based modelling and social media research to develop models of opinion-based groups in multilayer/multimode networks. Click this link for more information on this position.
These will work together to develop and validate a network theory of attitudes using traditional social psychology/behavioural experiments, agent-based modelling and mathematical modelling.
This project goes beyond simply trying to model attitude dynamics as information transfer to consider how networks of attitudes are generated through interaction, but then form symbolic stuctures that guide future interaction. This multilayer network structure offers a new functional metaphor for thinking about attitudes in societies.
Understanding the coordination of attitudes in societies is vitally important for many disciplines and global social challenges. Network opinion dynamics are currently poorly understood, especially in hybrid networks where automated (bot) agents seek to influence economic or political processes (e.g. USA: Trump vs Clinton; UK: Brexit). This project will provide a theoretical framework for understanding these opinion processes in society.
Funding covers fees (at EU rates), a stipend (equivalent to the Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship), and all research expenses. Funding runs from the time of appointment until December 2023.