The MicroMob project aims to gather fine-grained data on who participates in mass protest events around the world. Specifically, it aims to harness the power of user-generated photo images and social media to better understand the micro-dynamics of women's mobilization and its impacts.
The project will initially examine 30 non-violent and violent protest campaigns since 2010 in countries such as Egypt, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Burkina Faso, Guatemala, Ukraine, Burundi, Thailand, Venezuela, and Pakistan. For each case, the research team scrapes photos from Twitter, Facebook, and Google Images that were taken during the protest events. Using a machine learning computer vision tool, these photos will be analyzed for the gender composition of the crowd, interactions between groups, incidence of violence, and protest activities. By using images spanning the course of a campaign, this process will provide evidence as to who participated and how throughout the protests, as well as changes in movement structure and trends in protests tactics. Changes in crowd participation over time will allow us to analyze how these these variables are related to the likelihood of movement success or failure, or the likelihood that a movement will shift from non-violent to violent tactics. The dataset of our findings and the tool used to analyze them will advance our ability to understand how gender dynamics shape episodes of contention and violence.
This project is generously supported by the Carnegie Corporation of New York, Korbel Research Fund, and private donors.
- Marie Berry, Principal Investigator, Assistant Professor, Josef Korbel School of International Studies
- Annie Kraus, Student Research Assistant and Project Coordinator
- Christina Ibanez, Student Research Assistant
- Zana Idrizi, Student Research Assistant
- Rachel Kerstein, Student Research Assistant
- Trishna Rana, Student Research Assistant and Sié Fellow
- Alex Smith, Student Research Assistant and Sié Fellow