Quantifying views about the future during the latest Digital Revolution (1998-2020)

Betreuerin: Elena Fernández

This project will analyse increasing social anxiety about the future during our contemporary digital age. In previous historic epochs, such as the nineteenth century (1870-1920), the aggressive wave of technological innovations arriving to society created an unprecedented change in the daily life of Western citizens, who in a period of forty years witnessed the massive construction of railroads worldwide, the widespread use of electric light, the telegraph, or the steam ship, along with many other innovations. As a result, an increasing uncertainty about the future took place due to the fast-pace lifestyle changes that had never been experienced before. This project will analyze contemporary views about the future in order to compare the social impact of our present digital age (1998-2022) with the second industrial revolution (1870-1920). The corpus will include a variety of contemporary multilingual newspapers: The New York Times, The Times, Le Figaro, El País, La Stampa, NZZ, Der Spiegel. The observational time will be 1998-2020. A variety of computational methods will be used. 

Prerequisites

Prior experience in text mining; solid data analysis skills; knowledge in NLP and computational linguistics is a plus. Multilingual candidates will be especially welcomed, but it is not a requisite.

Project type

Semester project or master’s thesis.