Konstantin Gavras, PhD Student in Political Psychology

University of Mannheim | Data Enthusiast | R & Python User

Curriculum Vitae

e-Mail: konstantin@gavras.de

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Konstantin Gavras, M.A.

I am a Ph.D. candidate at the Graduate School of Economic and Social Sciences in Political Science and research associate at the Chair of Political Psychology at the University of Mannheim.

Research

My core research interests comprise the intersection of Social Psychology and Political Behavior, focusing on the behavioral consequences and conditions underlying political attitudes regarding both internal and foreign policies. I am also interested in the determinants of political attitudes and their impact on voting behavior, the consequences of adhering to citizenship norms, and the impact of elite-media-public political communication. Methodologically, I use the latent modeling framework, natural language processing and multi-level modeling.

In my dissertation I am examining under which conditions citizenship norms have behavioral consequences. My project encompasses a reconceptualization of citizenship norms within the framework of social norms, vignette experiments in Germany and the United States to identify the relevance of normative saliency and a large-scale survey study to examine the distribution and behavioral implications of citizenship norms within the German population.

Together with my great collegues I am also working on several smaller projects including a machine learning approach to derive ideological positioning and its dependency on the political discourse based on press releases by the German political parties, and a rigorous test of the conflicting hypotheses regarding the changes in citizenship norms over one’s lifespan. I am involved in a project exmaining the persistence of the winner-loser effects after elections. Additionally, I work on a project investigating the peculiarities of information search processes in the political domain based on the Attraction Search Effect.

I make use of several statistical software in my projects. I mainly work with R for multivariate analysis and Python for web based research, natural language processing and machine learning projects. Additionally, I use Stata and MPlus for specific research projects and am able to work with SPSS. I use MS Office and LaTeX as text processing and presenting tools.

Teaching

Since August 2016 I teach undergraduate seminars in Political Sociology and Methods. I taught classes on political ideologies and their impact on attitudes and behavior, and gave statistical courses in multi-level modeling and survey experiments. Last semester, I also received the Baden-Württemberg Zertifikat für Hochschuldidaktik.

My teaching for the undergraduate seminar “Ideologien, Einstellungssysteme und ihre politischen Konsequenzen” in Autumn 2016 was awarded with the GESS Teaching Award 2017.

CorrelAid

Since early 2015 I am member of CorrelAid, a network of young data analysts who seek to change civic society with a more inclusive, integrated and innovative approach to data analysis. The network takes a leading role in pro-bono data analysis and consultation for social organizations within Germany. CorrelAid builds on three pillars: It takes a pioneer role in analytics consulting for Non-Profit-Organizations. It connects young, driven data scientists and offers them the possibility to apply and develop their skills on real world problems. And it starts a dialogue on the potential of data and analytics for civic society.

With the establishment of CorrelAid, I became a member of our pilot project with the Boy Scouts of Northern Germany and carried out our project with the Assocation of Debatting Unions at Universities (VDCH) and the German Debating Union (DDG) as team leader. At the moment I am building a local chapter at the University of Mannheim in which CorrelAid provides the students with workshops and collaborative projects throughout the Rhine Neckar region.

If you want to learn more about CorrelAid, support our great work or become a member of the network, visit us on our website or follow us on Twitter.