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Projects - Fall 2013

The research project is the core part of this course. Students are required to implement an established mathematical model from the (sociological or related) literature in MATLAB. The final grade in the course is based on a 15 min. oral presentation and a written report (up to 15 pages plus source code) detailing the project.

The project work may be completed in groups of one to four people - we recommend to work at least in pairs such that the work load for each student is not too large. Project topic suggestions with literature reference will be made available below. There will be enough time to select a project among the suggested topics or a topic of a student's choice that is in accordance with the framework of the course. Students are then asked to submit a short proposal detailing their intended research project; you will be required to uploaded your proposal directly to your project's GitHub repository. An introduction to GitHub, a free open source version control software, will be given throughout the course.

Link: GitHub Repository Template

Project Suggestions - Fall 2013

More project suggestions will be added.

Projects of the previous semester

You may find a list of interesting projects from previous semesters in our GitHub repository here. Please look through some of the reports to get an idea for the kind of work we are expecting from you. Note that we are very aware of the projects that have been previously completed in the course and we want to remind you that copying of previously submitted work will result in automatic failure of the course.


The following links point to some interesting datasets. However, feel free to look for other datasets!

List of datasets
A list of some interesting datasets.
datasets.pdf (PDF, 139 KB)

Open Data Schweiz
Open dataset of the Swiss administration

Open Data Zürich
Open dataset of the city of Zurich.

Open Economics
A list of economic data resources.

Living Archive
A search engine for open data.

PubMed / MEDLINE / PubMed Central
Publications databases (mostly biology and medicine).

Database of preprint (and other) publications.

Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature Study
The project provides a preliminary data set from 1.6 billion temperature reports combined from 15 preexisting data archives; the data set is available in MATLAB format.

Maddison Data
Historical statistics about GDP and population data.

World Bank
The World Bank Data Catalog provides download access to over 2,000 socio-economic indicators from World Bank data sets.

International Monetary Found
The IMF publishes a range of time series data on IMF lending, exchange rates and other economic and financial indicators.

Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM)
The Global Entrepreneurship Monitor provides annual assessments of entrepreneurial activity, ambitions and attitudes for a wide range of countries.

CPSR of the University of Michigan
ICPSR offers more than 500,000 digital files containing social science research data. Disciplines represented include political science, sociology, demography, economics, history, gerontology, criminal justice, public health, foreign policy, terrorism, health and medical care, early education, education, racial and ethnic minorities, psychology, law, substance abuse and mental health, and more.

K Data Center of the University of Essex
The UK’s largest collection of digital research data in the social sciences and humanities.

World Value Survey
The World Value Survey provides data about values and cultural changes in societies all over the world.

CSCW Data on Armed Conflict
CSCW and Uppsala Conflict Data Program (UCDP) at the Department of Peace and Conflict Research, Uppsala University, have collaborated in the production of a dataset of armed conflicts, both internal and external, in the period 1946 to the present. Currently, probably the most extensive dataset repository available, in particular for historic data.

Partially contained in the PRIO dataset, ACLED (Armed Conflict Location and Events Dataset) is designed for disaggregated conflict analysis and crisis mapping. This dataset codes the location of all reported conflict events in 50 countries in the developing world. Data are currently being coded from 1997 to 2009 and the pro ject continues to backdate conflict information for African states to the year of independence.

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