Presentation at the Alan Turing Institute on May 24, 2018

On May 24, 2018, 16:00 - 17:30 Karsten Donnay speaks in the seminar of the Data & Inequality Research Interest Group at the Alan Turing Institute on the topic of "Perceptions of Inequality and their Links to Political Instability: The Role of Data Science."

Further details on the registration and venue may be found here.


Research on conflict suggests that perceived inequalities are key mobilizing factors. Understanding the exact mechanisms by which perceived inequalities become salient is therefore fundamental to our understanding of how political instability arises. Empirical analysis to date typically rely on structural indicators of inequality which are often highly aggregate, unspecific measures that do not reflect individual experiences. Moreover, these indicators do not capture perceived inequalities, which may or may not reflect actual structural inequalities, and thus fail to capture the feelings of deprivation and frustration that drive mobilization. Surveys on the other hand can be used to elicit perceptual measurements but are typically limited in spatial and temporal specificity. This talk examines recent approaches to fine-grained measurements of perceptions of inequalities that aim to overcome these limitations using data gleamed from artifacts of human interactions. It further highlights the corresponding contributions of data science to the quantitative study of political instability at the level of individual events or incidents.