15 febbraio 2009

Internet emerges as social research tool

da www.physorg.com:
For the past two decades, the Internet has been used by many as an easy-to-use tool that enables the spread of information globally. Increasingly, the Web is moving beyond its use as an electronic “Yellow Pages” and online messaging platform to a virtual world where social interaction and communities can inform social science and its applications in the real world. […]

Today, at the American Association for the Advancement of Science annual meeting in Chicago, a panel of scientists organized by Dietz planned to examine various aspects of using the World Wide Web as a tool for research.

University of Michigan political science professor Arthur Lupia was to kick off the session by discussing how new virtual communities are improving surveys and transforming social science. […]

Adam Henry, a doctoral fellow in the Sustainability Science Program at Harvard University’s Center for International Development, was scheduled next to discuss measuring social networks using the World Wide Web. […]

William Bainbridge, program director for the National Science Foundation’s Human-Centered Computing Cluster, was to rounded out the presentation with a discussion on the role of social science in creating virtual worlds.

“Bainbridge is studying group formation and social change over time in virtual worlds such as ‘World of Warcraft’ and ‘Second Life’ to inform and build on what sociologists have studied for 150 years”

Dietz said. “He contends that virtual worlds are excellent laboratories for observing and prototyping new social forms that can later be applied to the outside world".
Source: Michigan State University  | l’articolo completo

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