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Junior Researcher in the Field of Computational Social Science (m/f/d)

Junior Researcher in the Field of Computational Social Science (m/f/d)

The Leibniz Institute for Media Research | Hans-Bredow-Institut - subject to final approval of funds by the BMBF - is offering the following position from 1 June 2020 (a later start is possible upon agreement): Junior Researcher in the field of Computational Social Science (m/f/d) (pay grade 13 TV-L, 65%).

The Leibniz Institute for Media Research | Hans-Bredow-Institut (HBI) in Hamburg is one of the leading institutes in its field in Europe. The HBI examines media change and the associated structural changes in public communication. It combines basic research and research on knowledge transfer from a cross-media, interdisciplinary and independent scientific perspective.

Together with ten other institutes and universities, the HBI supports the "Forschungsinstitut Gesellschaftlicher Zusammenhalt" (FGZ; Research Institute Social Cohesion). It contributes several sub-projects, which deal in particular with the importance of media for social cohesion. The advertised position is assigned to the subproject "(Social) Media Observatory." In addition to its challenging scientific work, the Institute offers active and regular scientific exchange and supports doctoral students by offering in-house training opportunities and integrating them into (inter)national networks.

Your Tasks

  • Processing of work packages in the BMBF-funded project "(Social) Media Observatory" (SMO), especially collaboration in
    • Adaptation of existing and development of new scripts and programs for the automated collection and analysis of usage data in journalistic and social media;
    • Conception, implementation and support of an online portal for the project
    • Conception, implementation and support of reports on sub-modules of the project
    • Organisation and follow-up of workshops with scientists to teach the SMO tools;
  • Preparation of research results for scientific publications and lectures;
  • Participation or collaboration in institute-wide meetings and tasks, especially in the context of the "Media Research Methods Lab";
  • Participation or collaboration in meetings and tasks of the FGZ.
The opportunity to do a doctorate is provided within the framework of the research project.

Your Qualifications

  • A university degree, preferably in communication science or journalism; if you have a degree in another discipline, proven knowledge in the field of communication science and its methods is required;
  • Knowledge in the field of "Computational Social Science", for example in the development and/or application of social media analytics,
    • (Social) network analysis,
    • Natural language processing
    • Data mining, web scraping
    • Or machine learning;
  • Programming experience, preferably in Python and/or R, but in any case the desire and ability to acquire both languages and use them on a daily basis;
  • Knowledge of working with UNIX-based operating systems, relational databases (SQL) and Git is desirable;
  • Very good language skills in spoken and written German and English (both comparable to CEFR >= C1).
Employment, remuneration and social benefits are based on the collective agreement for the public service of the Länder (TV-L). The weekly working time is 25.4 hours, the position is limited to four years due to the duration of the project.

We particularly welcome applicants with an international background. Severely disabled applicants take precedence over non-privileged applicants of equal qualification, aptitude and professional achievement.

The HBI advocates gender equality and aims to increase the proportion of women in research. Therefore, applications from women are explicitly welcome. In the case of equal aptitude, competence and professional performance, women are given preferential consideration unless there are reasons in the person of a competitor that prevail.


Dr. Felix Münch (f.muench@leibniz-hbi.de) and Dr. Jan-Hinrik Schmidt (coordination of the FGZ location Hamburg; j.schmidt@leibniz-hbi.de) will be happy to answer your questions.


Please send your application with a meaningful cover letter and all relevant documents in a PDF file with the subject "SW19-16" until 6 May 2020 by e-mail to: bewerbung@leibniz-hbi.de. Please note that your application documents will be processed and stored in the context of filling the position. Travel expenses for job interviews can be reimbursed according to the regulations of the Hamburg Travel Expenses Act.

Photo by @plqml // felipe pelaquim on Unsplash


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