About digital social science

Big digital data offers multiple opportunities to investigate, understand, explain and even predict almost any factors in relation to human life.

In order to harvest the enormous potential of knowledge floating in this sea of data surrounding the digital society, a number of skills to both manage, analyse, apply and communicate big data is required, just as social scientific methodological and analytical qualifications are key to extract insight from these complex pieces of digital information.

Around the world, modern society collects huge amounts of data, such as transaction data, personal data from people’s interaction with the public sector, data from social media and geodata from transport and location services. Access to such data is growing among both private companies and public institutions.

How do we use data to create value in private and public companies and organisations? How is information from the new data types being connected to established conceptual frameworks and strategies?

Based on these questions, the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Copenhagen has decided to make digital social science a key element in its strategy for both research and education.

According to the Faculty's strategic goals for 2018/19-2022, the following objectives are listed under Goal C: Digital transformation and social data science:

  • The Faculty develops and boosts the use of digital methods and insights in relation to research, education, knowledge dissemination and administration
  • The Faculty enhances research and education in relation to social data science

The rapidly changing digital world creates great opportunities, but it also holds a number of challenges. When looking on issues like the potential for innovative companies, better governance on a stronger basis for decision-making, the shift of powers in the international system or on cyber security, the interaction between data management skills and a strong analytical mindset is vital in all these cases. There is a great need for integrated disciplines - people who can ask the right questions based on an academic analysis, and search for answers in the huge and complex data sets we have available today. In this respect, the MSc programme in Social Data Science is very interesting, because it combines a number of core academic disciplines within the social sciences and thus giving them, partly an interdisciplinary profile, partly an extra gear of data analysis. I have no doubt that graduates will be in high demand in both the private and he public sectors.

Casper Klynge Tech Ambassador of Denmark