European Symposium Series on Societal Challenges

in Computational Social Science


2017: Inequality and Imbalance


London, UK

November 15th-17th, 2017





September 8th, 2017Workshops and tutorials proposal submission deadline
September 12th, 2017Workshops and tutorials acceptance notification
September 30th, 2017 (23.59 Hawaii Standard Time)Deadline for abstract submission
October 13th, 2017Notification of acceptance
November 15th, 2017Workshop and tutorial day
November 16th-17th, 2017Main conference


This is the first in a series of three symposia that discuss societal challenges in computational social sciences. In the first year, the focus will be on “Inequality and Imbalance” (London, 2017). Future events will be focused on “Bias and Discrimination” (Cologne, 2018) and “Polarization and Radicalization” (Zurich, 2019).

With these three events we provide a platform to address one of the most pressing challenges in today’s digital society: understanding the role that digital technologies, the Web, and the algorithms used therein play in the mediation and creation of inequalities, discrimination and polarization.

By addressing inequality as the topical issue for the symposium series we intend to explore how CSS can contribute to opening up new ways of thinking about, of measuring, detecting and coping with social inequality, discrimination, and polarization. We will discuss how divides and inequalities are proliferated in digital society, how social cleavages can be observed via web data, how the organizational structure of the web itself generates biases and inequality, and how, in contrast, algorithms and computational tools might help to reduce discrimination and inequality. We will also investigate how bias and unequal social structures foster political tension and polarization, including issues of radicalization and hate.

The Symposium series is funded by the Volkswagen Foundation.



The Symposium 2017 will be a three-day event consisting of:

  • a two-days, single-track conference featuring a series of invited talks that will provide different perspectives on challenges in the area of Inequality and Imbalance
  • a day of multiple satellite events, including workshop and tutorials
  • an open call for contributed presentations that will provide opportunities for computational social scientists to present and discuss their own work
  • an open call for workshop and tutorial organization that will provide opportunities for computational social scientists to gather focus groups around the latest trends in Computational Social Science
  • plenty of possibilities for interdisciplinary networking
  • an evening “science slam” with a selection of short scientific talk where scientists present their own research in front of a non-expert audience
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Add to My Calendar 2017-11-15 09:00:00 2017-11-17 18:00:00 Europe/London European Symposium Series on Societal Challenges in Computational Social Science 2017: Inequality and Imbalance Alan Turing Institute and British Library. London, UK Gesis



Deepak Ajwani, Nokia Bell Labs Florian Lemmerich, GESIS Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences & University of Koblenz-Landau
Harith Alani, The Open University Matteo Magnani, Uppsala University
Tim Althoff, Stanford University Drew Margolin, Cornell University
Fred Amblard, University Toulouse 1 Capitole Michael Mäs, ETH Zurich
Jisun An, Hamad Bin Khalifa University Yelena Mejova, Qatar Computing Research Institute
Pablo Aragón, Universitat Pompeu Fabra Stasa Milojevic, Indiana University
Martin Atzmueller, Tilburg University Suzy Moat, University of Warwick
Pablo Barberá, New York University John Mohr, University of California, Santa Barbara
Andrea Baronchelli, City, University of London Sophie Muetzel, University of Lucerne
Paul Baur, European University Institute Keiichi Nakata, University of Reading
Matthias Brust, University of Luxembourg Sanna Ojanpera, University of Oxford
Peter Burnap, Cardiff University Elisa Omodei, UNICEF
Fabio Celli, University of Trento Sarah Otner, Imperial College Business School
Meeyoung Cha, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology & Facebook André Panisson, ISI Foundation
Rense Corten, Utrecht University Symeon Papadopoulos, Information Technologies Institute
Michele Coscia, Harvard University Christian Pentzold, Chemnitz University of Technology
Andrew Crooks, George Mason University Nicola Perra, University of Greenwich
Sebastian Deri, Cornell University Juergen Pfeffer, Technical University of Munich
Bruce A. Desmarais, Pennsylvania State University Alessandro Provetti, Birkbeck, University of London
Victor M Eguiluz, Institute for Cross-Disciplinary Physics and Complex Systems (CSIC-UIB) Hemant Purohit, George Mason University
Emilio Ferrara, University of Southern California Cornelius Puschmann, Alexander von Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society
Fabian Flöck, GESIS Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences Jose J. Ramasco, Institute for Cross-Disciplinary Physics and Complex Systems (CSIC-UIB)
Vanessa Frias-Martinez, University of Maryland Miriam Redi, Yahoo
Wai-Tat Fu, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Georgios Rizos, Centre for Research and Technology Hellas
David Garcia, ETH Zurich Camille Roth, National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS)
Mathieu Génois, GESIS Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences Giancarlo Ruffo, University of Turin
Bruno Gonçalves, New York University Diego Saez-Trumper, Pompeu Fabra University
Sandra Gonzalez-Bailon, University of Pennsylvania Rossano Schifanella, University of Turin
Andreea Gorbatai, University of California, Berkeley Ingo Scholtes, ETH Zurich
Przemyslaw Grabowicz, Max Planck Institute for Software Systems (MPI-SWS) Frank Schweitzer, ETH Zurich
Andrew Guess, New York University Xiaoling Shu, University of California, Davis
Scott Hale, University of Oxford Emma Spiro, University of Washington
Raphael H. Heiberger, University of Bremen Sebastian Stier, GESIS Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences
Laura Hollink, Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica Markus Strohmaier, University of Koblenz-Landau
Geert-Jan Houben, Delft University of Technology Marcella Tambuscio, University of Turin
Dirk Hovy, University of Copenhagen Misha Teplitskiy, University of Chicago
Adam Jatowt, Kyoto University Bart Thomee, Google
Marco Alberto Javarone, University of Hertfordshire Carmen Vaca Ruiz, Escuela Superior Politécnica del Litoral (ESPOL)
Andreas Jungherr, University of Konstanz George Valkanas, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
Andreas Kaltenbrunner, Eurecat Dani Villatoro, IIIA, Spanish Council for Scientific Research
Kazuhiro Kazama, Wakayama University Claudia Wagner, GESIS Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences
Brian Keegan, University of Colorado Boulder Ingmar Weber, Qatar Computing Research Institute
Katharina Kinder-Kurlanda, GESIS Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences Robert West, Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL)
Andreas Koch, University of Salzburg Roger Whitaker, Cardiff University
Farshad Kooti, University of Southern California Gregor Wiedemann, Leipzig University
Nicolas Kourtellis, Telefonica Research Christo Wilson, Northeastern University
Haewoon Kwak, Qatar Computing Research Institute Taha Yasseri, University of Oxford
David Laniado, Eurecat Emilio Zagheni, University of Washington
Anders Larsson, University of Oslo Arkaitz Zubiaga, University of Warwick
Wonjae Lee, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology


Call for Papers

We welcome submissions in the intersection of the social sciences and the computer sciences, including (a) new approaches for understanding social phenomena and addressing societal challenges, (b) improving methods for computational social science, (c) and understanding the influence of the Web and digital technologies on society.

For the 1st Symposium we are especially interested in:

  • Methods for inequality measurement, including measuring inequality on the Web
  • Mediating inequalities via computational methods
  • Inequality data mining
  • Detecting trends of inequality
  • Digital reproduction of inequality
  • Online vs. offline inequalities
  • Cross-country and longitudinal studies of inequality
  • Missing data
  • Digital civil society and digital citizenship
  • Digital divides and digital inequality
  • Global inequality and effects of globalization
  • Power imbalances
  • Demographics and age structures
  • Underrepresented groups
  • Wealth and poverty research
  • Economic inequality
  • Health inequalities
  • Models of social capital in the digital age
  • Non-users of digital technologies
  • Accessibility of and barriers to digital technologies
  • Skills and digital literacy

Other related topics are explicitly welcome.

Submission Guidelines

Authors are kindly requested to submit a PDF file via the EasyChair submission system for the event:

Submissions should be 1-2 page abstracts (up to approx. 1000 words) summarizing the work to be presented. We encourage researchers to also submit mature work that has already been published and/or submit work-in-progress. Please give a sufficiently detailed description of your work and your methods so we can adequately assess its relevance. Each extended abstract will be reviewed by a Program Committee composed of experts in computational social science. Accepted submissions will be non-archival, i.e. there are no proceedings. We may however discuss options for publishing selected submissions after the conference (e.g. as a journal special issue or edited collection).

Submissions will mostly be evaluated based on relevance and the potential to stimulate interesting discussions.

The deadline for submission is September 30th, 2017. Notice of acceptance will be October 13th, 2017.

Submissions can be accepted as either oral presentations or posters.

The full call for submissions can also be found here.


Call for Workshops and Tutorials

The organizing committee of the First Symposium on Societal Challenges in Computational Social Science welcomes submissions for workshops and tutorials proposals on any emerging topic at the intersection of the social sciences and the computer sciences. The workshop and tutorial day will be held at the Alan Turing Institute in London, UK on November 15th, 2017.

Workshops will give the opportunity to meet and discuss issues with a selected focus, providing an excellent forum for exploring emerging approaches and task areas and bridging the gaps between the social science and technology fields.

Tutorials will be an opportunity for cross-disciplinary engagement and a deeper understanding of new tools, techniques, and research methodologies. Tutorials should provide either an in-depth look at an emerging technique or software package or a broad summary of an important direction in the field.

Members of all segments of the social media research community are encouraged to submit proposals. To foster interaction and exchange of ideas, the workshops will be kept small, with 30 participants maximum. Attendance is limited to active participants only.

Important Dates

Workshops and tutorials proposal submission deadline: September 8th, 2017

Workshops and tutorials acceptance notification: September 12th, 2017

Workshops and tutorials day: November 15th, 2017

Submission Guidelines

Authors are kindly requested to submit a PDF file via email to

Proposals for workshops and tutorials should be no more than three (3) pages in length (10pt, single column, with reasonable margins), written in English, and should contain the following:

  • A concise title
  • The names, affiliations, and contact information of the organizing committee
  • Duration of the event (half-day or full-day meeting)
  • A short abstract describing the scope and main objective of the event
  • A short description of the main topic and themes (2 paragraphs maximum)
  • A description of the proposed event format and a detailed list of proposed activities
  • An approximate timeline of the activities
  • Historical information about the event, when available
  • [Workshops only] A description of how workshop submissions will be evaluated (invited contributions, peer review, etc.)

Workshops and tutorials will be selected based on the following criteria:

  • Timeliness of the topic
  • Potential to attract the interest of researchers in computer science and social/organizational sciences
  • Promotion of activities that are different from the classic mini-conference format; those include challenges, games, interactive sessions, brainstorming and networking.
  • Involvement people of different backgrounds in the organizing committee
  • Addressing topics at the intersection of different disciplines

The full call for submissions can also be found here.



We aim to keep registration costs as low as possible. More information will be made available soon.

Paper/poster submission is not a requirement for attendance.



The Symposium will take place in London, UK.

The workshop day will be held at the Alan Turing Institute and the main conference will be hosted by the British Library.

The Alan Turing Institute

The national institute for data science was founded in 2015 by five leading universities – Cambridge, Edinburgh, Oxford, UCL and Warwick – and the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council.

The British Library

The main conference will be held at the Knowledge Centre of the British Library.

Nowadays the British Library serves business and industry, academics, researchers and students not only in the UK, but also world-wide. The collection of well-known British Library counts well over 150 million items in various languages, including manuscripts, newspapers, magazines, maps, prints, drawings, patents and music scores.

How to find the Alan Turing Institute and the British Library

The Alan Turing Institute is located at the British Library.

British Library
96 Euston Rd
How to get there

How to get there from the airports

From St. Pancras International Station and from King’s Cross St. Pancras Underground Station it takes only 7 minutes to reach the British Library on foot.

Heathrow Airport

  1. Approximately 15 min. to Paddington Station by Heathrow Express
  2. Approximately 10 min. from Paddington Underground Station (Hammersmith & City line towards Barking) to King’s Cross St. Pancras Underground Station;
    approximately 25 min. from Paddington Rail Station (Stop H) to British Library (Stop C) by bus

London City Airport

  1. Approximately 20 min. to Bank Station by train
  2. Approximately 8 min from Bank Underground Station (Northern Line towards Edgware) to King’s Cross St. Pancras Underground Station

Gatwick Airport

  1. Approximately 55 min. from Gatwick Airport Station (towards Bedford) to St. Pancras International Station by train

Luton Airport

  1. Approximately 5 min. to Luton Airport Parkway Rail Station by Luton Airport Shuttle
  2. Approximately 30 min. from Luton Airport Parkway (towards Three Bridges) to St. Pancras International Station by train

Stansted Airport

  1. Approximately 30 min. from Stansted Airport (towards London Liverpool Street) to Tottenham Hale by train
  2. Approximately 10 min. from Tottenham Hale Underground Station (Victoria Line towards Brixton) to King’s Cross St. Pancras Underground Station

Southend Airport

  1. Approximately 45 min. from Southend Airport (towards London Liverpool Street) to Stratford by train
  2. Approximately 7 min. from Stratford International to St. Pancras International Station by train


Travel Grants

Due to the generous funding by Volkswagen Foundation we are able to offer up to 40 travel grants to early career researchers whose talks are accepted for the symposium. Both plenary talk presenters and workshop/ tutorial presenters are eligible for the travel grants.

The travel grant consists of 500 EUR for authors from non-European countries or 250 EUR for authors from Europe and also covers the registration fee for the symposium. Travel grant recipients will be selected by a committee of experts based on their academic excellence, financial needs and diversity (e.g. gender, geographical and disciplinary diversity).

Please indicate in your submission 1) if you wish to apply for a travel grant, 2) your motivation for the grant application and 3) whether you will still attend the symposium without a travel grant.

The grants aim to especially support attendees with limited travel resources and attendees from countries where Computational Social Science is not yet well established.


Visa Support

Letters of support can be requested by accepted European Symposium Series on Societal Challenges in Computational Social Science authors or registrants with a completed registration with payment. If you are attending the European Symposium and require a letter of support, please send the following information to

  • First/Given Name:
  • Family/Last Name:
  • Position:
  • Organization:
  • Department:
  • Address:
  • City:
  • Zip/Postal Code:
  • Country:
  • Email:
  • Are you an author of a paper?
  • Paper title:
  • If not accepted author, Registration Confirmation Nr.:









The Alan Turing Institute and British Library

96 Euston Road

London NW1 2DB




Organizing Team

+49 (0221) 47694-254


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