Stijn Peeters

University of Amsterdam Assistant Professor

Fellowship project title: Improving the 4CAT Capture and Analysis Toolkit 

The goal: The 4CAT Capture and Analysis Toolkit is a set of research software for the analysis of social media data. Aimed at humanities researchers, students, and (data) journalists, its goal is to make it easy for people without technical expertise to work with large social media datasets; it is a web-based tool that does not require usage of the command line or programming code. 4CAT has been developed by and for researchers and is already used relatively widely. But to properly serve a broader audience it would benefit from a UX not designed by researchers, and better documentation and tutoring materials. The aim of this project is to facilitate the evolution of 4CAT into a mature and robust software toolkit for a wide audience of people interested in working with social media data. 

The why: Social media platforms are an important site of research, and many researchers are well-positioned to analyse data originating there even if they do not have the technical expertise that is currently often required to capture data from it. 4CAT’s goal is to open up this site of research to those researchers and other interested people, and to additionally make existing methodological workflows available in a transparent, traceable, and modular way.