Book chapters

Ackland, R. and A. Evans (2017), "Using the Web to Examine the Evolution of the Abortion Debate in Australia 2005-2015," in N. Brügger and R. Schroeder (eds), Web as History [OPEN ACCESS!]. London: UCL Press. (download chapter pre-print)

Graham, T. and R. Ackland (2017), "Do Socialbots Dream of Popping the Filter Bubble? The Role of Socialbots in Promoting Deliberative Democracy in Social Media",  in M. Bakardjieva and R. W. Gehl (eds) Socialbots and Their Friends: Digital Media and the Automation of Sociality. New York: Routledge. (download pre-print)

Other publications

Ackland, R. (2017), "Book Review of Economic Analysis of the Digital Economy (eds A. Goldfarb, S. Greenstein and C. Tucker; University of Chicago Press)," Economic Record, Volume 93, Issue 301, 334-336. 

Conference papers and presentations

Halpin, D., Fraussen, B. and Ackland, R. (2017), "Assessing the Role of Policy Identity in Explaining Interest Group Audiences in Twitter," paper presented (by D. Halpin) at the American Political Science Association Annual Meeting Panel "Interest Groups and the Media", San Francisco, 31 August - 3 September, 2017.

Other outputs

"Incivility in political conversations on Twitter" - a data science-informed paper sculpture collaboration between ANU Vice-Chancellor's College Visiting Artist Fellow Jen Fullerton and Robert Ackland. Exhibited at the ANU VCCAFS Exhibition on 14 February 2017.
    - See related article by Canberra Times.


ANU Vice-Chancellor's Teaching Enhancement Grant for "Web Application for Teaching the Collection and Analysis of Social Media Data" (R. Ackland and T. Graham; $9,515, 2017).

Incoming visitor scholar award, International Visitor Exchange Scheme (IVES)UK National Centre for Research Methods International, (R. Ackland; 2017).

Conference/workshop/seminar presentations

At the 67th Annual Conference of the International Communication, San Diego, 25-29 May 2017:

  • Presentations at the "New Software and Tools for Analyzing Communication" Session (Computational Methods Interest Group)
    • Software demonstration: Collecting and Analyzing Social Media Data Using SocialMediaLab - Tim Graham (presenter), Rob Ackland
    • Software demonstration: Virtual Observatory for the Study of Online Networks (VOSON) - Rob Ackland
  • Presentations at the "Panel on Network Methods for Communication Research" (Computational Methods Interest Group, Chaired by Rob Ackland)
    • Connecting Issues and Actors in Online Activist Fields - Mathieu O'Neil (presenter), Rob Ackland
    • Ontologically Aware Social Media Network Research: Concepts and Tools - Tim Graham (presenter), Rob Ackland

Ackland, R., Graham, T., and F. Muhle “Identifying and Analysing Political Conversations on Twitter”, presentation (by R. Ackland) at the 2nd Australian Social Network Analysis Conference, University of Sydney, 28-29 November 2017.

Graham, T. and R. Ackland "Governing news production via blockchain technologies," presentation (by Tim Graham) at Mundane Governance Conference: Exploring the Hardwiring, Disappearance & Politics of Everyday Government, Australian National University, 22-24 November 2017.

In June/July 2017, R. Ackland gave the following seminar presenations:

  • "Research using large-scale Twitter datasets," seminar presentation at University of Exeter, Q-Step Centre, 30 June 2017.
  • "VOSON Lab Overview and Research Into Politically-Oriented Conversations on Twitter," seminar presentation at University of Manchester, Data Science Institute, 3 July 2017.
  • "VOSON Lab Overview and Research Into Politically-Oriented Conversations on Twitter," seminar presentation at Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC), 10 July 2017.
On March 9, 2017, Dr Florian Muhle, academic visitor from Bielefeld University, gave the seminar presentation "Detecting Socialbots with the Help of Qualitative Research Methods"



Dr Florian Muhle, Faculty of Sociology, Bielefeld University, Germany. Australia – Germany Joint Research Co-operation Scheme 2017-18 (Universities Australia – DAAD) “Socialbots as political actors? Autonomous communication technologies as tools and objects for digital sociology”

Training programs

6-10 February 2017 - "Big Data Analysis for Social Scientists" 5-day course held at the 2017 ACSPRI Summer Program, University of Melbourne (R. Ackland) (ACSPRI page) (course page)

26 June 2017 - "Big Data Analysis for Social Scientists" Masterclass held at National Chengchi University, Taipei (R. Ackland)

The following big data analytics and SocialMediaLab training workshops were run by R. Ackland as part of the UK National Centre for Research Methods International Visitor Exchange Scheme (IVES):

  • 30 June 2017 - University of Exeter Q-Step Centre
  • 4-5 July 2017 - University of Manchester, Methods@Manchester Summer School 2017
  • 6 July 2017 - University of Edinburgh

10-11 July 2017 - Big Data Analysis for Social Scientists Masterclass held at Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) (R. Ackland)