Past Research

Building a Corpus of Spontaneous Speech in Tsez

We plan to create a corpus of spontaneous speech in Tsez, an endangered language of the Caucasus spoken by about 6,000 people, and three endangered Mayan languages. The project will involve collecting, transcribing and annotating the data in such a way that they could be used by other researchers. We will then compare these languages to spoken production from several heritage languages (Russian, Chinese, Avar, Spanish, and Mam) whose corpora will also be transcribed and annotated.

The Emergence of Party Discipline in the British House of Commons

This project comprises the compilation of the most extensive database of British legislative records ever built.  We have already acquired every speech made in the British House of Commons after 1803, and are soon to acquire every roll call undertaken between 1832 and 1900.  Our research focuses on when and how party discipline emerged in the British House of Commons.  Primary responsibility of the student is  to 'clean up' of roll call records, which list member of parliament …

A Stylometric Analysis of Phillip Wright's "The Tariff on Animal and Vegetable Oils"

This research project is a continuing project of the stylometric analysis of Phillip Wright's Appendix B from his book, "The Tariff on Animal and Vegetable Oils", which outlined the method of instrumental variable regression. A number of letters between Phillip and Sewall Wright contain the development of IV regression. This project requires deciphering the statistical work in their letters.

Longitudinal Study of War-Affected Youth

In 2002, in collaboration with the International Rescue Committee, Dr. Betancourt, director of the FXB Center’s Research Program on Children and Global Adversity began a prospective longitudinal study (LWSAY) on children associated with armed conflict and armed groups (CAAFAG) in Sierra Leone, West Africa. Follow-up data were collected in 2003/2004 and 2008. The sample includes former child soldiers and other war-affected youth.

Digital Humanities

Over the past two years, Afsaneh Najmabadi has developed a digital archive and website that preserves, links, and renders accessible primary source materials related to the social and cultural history of women’s worlds during the reign of the Qajar dynasty (1796 – 1925) in Iran. Over the next period, the project will be focused on is the development and launch of two new features: an interactive research platform and an interactive genealogy and geography feature.

The Development of Democratic Politics in Victorian and Edwardian Britain (1830s-1914)

Spring 2011

We investigated the development of democratic politics in Victorian and  Edwardian Britain (1830s--1914).  We gathered the largest ever data collection on electoral results, roll call votes and speeches by members of  parliament.  We also employed new quantitative techniques for investigating the same.

Partisan Taunting

Summer 2011

This project was a content analysis of US Congress' speeches across time. The goal of the research was to identify and study one specific communication technique, defined as "partisan taunting."

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