New member: Felicia Loecherbach

We are extremely happy to announce that we have hired Felicia Loecherbach, who will be joining us as PhD student on the Filter Bubbles Project.

Felicia combines a strong communication science background with very good technical skills. She completed the UvA research master in Communication Science. For her thesis she implemented her own news recommender system and web interface in python for conducting live, large-scale experiments tracking usage over time. It combines web scraping, machine learning, different customization options as well as gamification elements to enable testing various forms of news personalization in a controlled, yet realistic environment.

In the filter bubbles project, she will concentrate on the substantive analysis of (mobile) digital traces of news consumption behaviour: what news are people actually exposed to and choose to consume, can we find substantial evidence for echo chambers or filter bubbles, and if so what are the possible consequences for political knowledge and attitudes? Her other research interests include the interplay between political public relations and (social) media as well as furthering the usage of computational methods in communication science. She contributes for example to the open-source project INCA to facilitate collection, processing and analysis of online (textual) data for social scientists.

Since we now also know that Vincent van Hees and Laurens Bogaardt are joining us from the Netherlands eScience Center as eScience engineers, the team is complete and we can get to work 🙂

New journal: Computational Communication Research

We am very excited to announce that we just launched Computational Communication Research (CCR), a new open-access peer-reviewed journal dedicated to development and applications of computational methods for communication science. We hope that CCR will serve as central home for communication scientists with an interest in and focus on computational methods — a place to read and publish the cutting edge work in our growing subfield.

Please see the inaugural call for papers at (abstracts 30 Sept, manuscripts 30 Nov), and consider submitting your best computational work to the first issue!

Don’t hesitate to contact us for more information, and looking forward to your submissions!

Vacancies for 3 asst. profs. in (computational) communication science

The VU University Amsterdam has three openings for assistant professors, of which two explicitly look for candidates with computational skills:

The VU department of Communication Science aims to hire candidates in the fields of:

a) Political communication / public affairs (from January 2019)

b) Corporate communication and/or marketing communication (from January 2019),

c) Media psychology. (from August 1st)

For all three positions, we prefer candidates with a strong focus on the use of new communication technologies (e.g. social media, social robotics, sharing platforms). For positions a) and b) we prefer candidates who apply computational methods such as automatic text analysis, machine learning, or network analysis using programming languages such as R and Python.

If you have are an expert in any of these fields, have good computational skills, and want to be part of our fast-growing Computational Communication Science lab (see also, please consider applying to one of these positions before May 10th.

Don’t hesitate to email me if you need more information! (

CCS Amsterdam launched

We decided to launch the “CCS Amsterdam” lab for Computational Communication Science. This is a collaboration between scholars from the UvA and VU aimed at developing and stimulating the use of Computational Methods in Communication Science research. Data, tools, analyses and results should be as transparent, open and easy to share and reuse as possible. We firmly believe that newly available digital data sets, analysis methods and processing power can help improve the state of the art in communication research.

(obviously, this site is very much work in progress 🙂 )