Tracing Social Emergence - NB! Closed for further registration

Course content

The course connects a number of methodological innovations within the field of digital methods with a growing sociological interest for hypes, futures and ideas and their emergence and spread. The subject field of the course - hypes, futures and ideas – thus refers to the sociological branch of 'Science and Technology Studies' (STS) and its attempts to track innovation, social changes and the history of ideas.

In the course, students are equipped with tools and methods to track the emergence of social phenomena using new large sources of data (Big Data). Methodically, students are introduced to a variety of digital methods and their associated theoretical framework. In addition, students obtain both methodological and practical skills with a variety of digital tools such as Gephi, TCAT (Twitter API), Hyphe, Cortex, Facebook API, Tableau, Google Trends & Ngram.

Parallel to this class explorations, the students explore a concrete social phenomenon inception through a case-based group work gaining practical experience and important insights into how emergent phenomena are used in organization’s strategic navigation.


MA sociological course in methods in social sciences (MSc Curriculum 2005)

MA Research Methodology and Practice (MSc Curriculum 2015)

Course package (MSc 2015):

- Welfare, inequality and mobility
- Knowledge, organisation and politics
- Culture, lifestyle and everyday life

Learning outcome

By the end of the course students will be:


- familiar with research in digital methods and digital sociology, STS studies of hypes and expectations as well as critical studies of new digital data.


-  apply Actor-network theory, digital metods and tools in their investigations

- identify, protect, analyse and present survey results on social emergence.

- adapt and optimize the study protocol through an iterative proces In addition

- develop skills in case-based group work


By the end of the course students are able to

- plan and carry out a study based on Actor-network theory and digital methods and tools

- navigate and reside in the uncertainty that are a condition for working with new methods and techniques

Lecture, problem-oriented group work, workshops.
Please note that the course is structured as a 5 week course. This intensive format has been chosen to create the best possible environment for the students to learn to master the practical tools course uses. It however also means that vacations and alike should not be held during the course.

7,5 ECTS - 600-700 pages
10 ECTS - 800 pages

Venturini, Tommaso, Mathieu Jacomy, and Débora Pereira. “VISUAL NETWORK ANALYSIS: THE EXAMPLE OF THE RIO+20 ONLINE DEBATE,” Working paper, 2014.

Krygier, John, and Denis Wood. “Ce N’est Pas Le Monde (This Is Not the World).” Rethinking Maps: New Frontiers in Cartographic Theory, 2011, 189.

Savage, M., and R. Burrows. “The Coming Crisis of Empirical Sociology.” Sociology 41, no. 5 (October 1, 2007): 885–99. doi:10.1177/0038038507080443.

Latour, Bruno. Reassembling the Social : An Introduction to Actor-Network-Theory. Page 1-17. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 2005.

Venturini, Tommaso, and Bruno Latour. “The Social Fabric: Digital Traces and Quali-Quantitative Methods.” In Future En Seine 2009. Paris: Cap Digital, 2010.

PwC. The Wearable Future. Consumer Intelligence Series. PwC, 2014.

Borup, Mads, Nik Brown, Kornelia Konrad, and Harro Van Lente. “The Sociology of Expectations in Science and Technology.” Technology Analysis & Strategic Management 18, no. 3–4 (July 2006): 285–98. doi:10.1080/09537320600777002.

Thomsen, Tao Legêne, and Tobias Bornakke. “Through the Eyes of the Machine - Exploring the Emergence of Big Data through Mapping Digital Expectations.” Copenhagen Business School, 2013. Retrived from

Venturini, Tommaso. “Diving in Magma: How to Explore Controversies with Actor-Network Theory.” Public Understanding of Science 19, no. 3 (May 29, 2009): 258–73. doi:10.1177/0963662509102694.

Venturini, Tommaso, Axel Meunier, Anders Kristian Munk, Erik K. Borra, Bernhard Rieder, Michele Mauri, Matteo Azzi, et al. “,” December 2, 2014.

Ruppert, E., J. Law, and M. Savage. “Reassembling Social Science Methods: The Challenge of Digital Devices.” Theory, Culture & Society 30, no. 4 (May 14, 2013): 22–46. doi:10.1177/0263276413484941.

Borra, Erik, and Bernhard Rieder. “Programmed Method: Developing a Toolset for Capturing and Analyzing Tweets.” Edited by Dr Axel Bruns and Dr Katrin Weller. Aslib Journal of Information Management 66, no. 3 (May 13, 2014): 262–78. doi:10.1108/AJIM-09-2013

Venturini, Tommaso, and Daniele Guido. “Once Upon a Text: An ANT Tale in Text Analysis.” Sociologica, 2013.

Venturini, Tommaso, Nicolas Baya Laffite, Jean-Philippe Cointet, Ian Gray, Vinciane Zabban, and Kari De Pryck. “Three Maps and Three Misunderstandings: A Digital Mapping of Climate Diplomacy.” Big Data & Society 1, no. 2 (January 7, 2014): 2053951714543804. doi:10.1177/2053951714543804.

Munk, Anders Kristian. MAPPING WIND ENERGY CONTROVERSIES ONLINE. Wind2050, Forthcomming.

Latour, Bruno. Science in Action : How to Follow Scientists and Engineers through Society. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1987. Chapter 1 + 2 (p. 18-100).

Latour, Bruno. «Why Has Critique Run out of Steam? From Matters of Fact to Matters of Concern». Critical Inquiry 30, nr. 2 (Januar 2004): 225–48. doi:10.1086/421123.

Callon, Michel. “The Sociology of an Actor-Network: The Case of the Electric Vehicle.” Mapping the Dynamics of Science and Technology 23 (1987).


The course is accesible for most people with a humanistic or social science background.

Dette kursus har adgangsbegrænsninger. Kurset vil som udgangspunkt ikke blive udbudt igen. Du kan således ikke planlægge efter, at det udbydes i senere semestre, end hvad der fremgår af denne kursusbeskrivelse.

The number of lecture hours are the same for both 7,5 and 10 ECTS courses.

10 ECTS:
Lectures: 28
Course preparation:130
Exercises: 67
Exam Preparation: 50
Total 275

See exam description
Type of assessment
Individual or group. A portfolio assignment is defined as a series of short assignments during the course that address one or more set questions and feedback is offered during the course. All of the assignments are submitted together for assessment at the end of the course. The portfolio assignments must be no longer than 10 pages. For group assignments, an extra 5 pages is added per additional student. Further details for this exam form can be found in the Curriculum and in the General Guide to Examinations at KUnet.
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
Criteria for exam assessment

Please see the learning outcome

See exam description
Type of assessment
Written assignment
Individual/group. Free written take-home essays are assignments for which students define and formulate a problem within the parameters of the course and based on an individual exam syllabus. The free written take-home essay must be no longer than 10 pages. For group assignments, an extra 5 pages is added per additional student. Further details for this exam form can be found in the Curriculum and in the General Guide to Examinations at KUnet.
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
Criteria for exam assessment

Please see the learning outcome

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 28
  • Course Preparation
  • 60
  • Preparation
  • 56
  • Exercises
  • 62
  • English
  • 206