Job Postings

PhD Open Position at ETH Zurich -- Emotions and Politics in Social Media

The Chair of Systems Design in ETH Zurich, and the Centre for Research on Direct Democracy in Universität Zürich offer a position for a PhD student working in the project “The Role of Emotional Interactions in the Polarization of Opinions in Participatory Media” funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF), starting as soon as possible.

This project brings together the fields of social science, computer science, and statistical physics to advance in the understanding of the polarization of opinions and emotions during online interaction. The project has a special emphasis in the dynamics of emotions in political discussions.

The candidate is expected to collaborate in the following tasks of the

  • Analysis of emotional interaction and opinion polarization in large datasets of online discussions
  • Explore universal patterns of polarization and popularity in online participatory media (fora, news sites, social networks…)
  • Analyze differences in the online interaction of online subcommunities depending on their political orientation
  • Design, simulate, and analyze agent-based models of online interaction that reproduce the observed phenomena


  • MSc degree or equivalent in psychology, sociology, or political science
  • ability to combine modeling and statistical data analysis (e.g. R, Matlab)
  • ability to develop formal models and computer simulations (e.g. Java,
  • good knowledge about graph algorithms and social network analysis is a plus
  • strong abilities to communicate in an interdisciplinary scientific environment
  • interest in becoming acquainted with methods from physics, economics, and computer science

We offer excellent working conditions and collaboration with a lively team in both institutions, as well as with leading institutions worldwide.

Applicants are kindly requested to send their curriculum vitae, transcript of records, list of publications (if available), names of at least three references, and an overview of their research interests (all in PDF files), to

Ms. Rahel Dulik
[email protected]

For specific inquiries, please contact Prof. Dr. Dr. Frank Schweitzer ([email protected]).


This website uses cookies and Google Analytics to help us track user engagement and improve our site. If you'd like to know more information about what data we collect and why, please see our data privacy policy. If you continue to use this site, you consent to our use of cookies.