Austin van Loon

Stanford Sociology PhD Candidate

My primary stream of research centers around the distribution of beliefs in society. I study how groups come to see the world in disparate ways and the consequences this has for how these groups interact. I tend to study these questions in the context of U.S. political polarization, though I'm also interested in economic activity and organizational behavior. I use a broad range of tools to do this research, including: automated text analysis, machine learning, network analysis, experiments, and observational causal inference. My secondary stream of research focuses on solving fundamental methodological and metatheoretical issues related to the use of computational methods in the social sciences. Head to my research page to learn more about what I've been up to. Check out my teaching page and my GitHub page for material I have used to teach students about statistics, network analysis, text analysis, and workplace inequalities.

I am a member of the Computational Culture Lab, a member of the Polarization and Social Change Lab (PaSCL), and an alumnus of the 2019 Princeton Summer Institute in Computational Social Science (SICSS). I am a Stanford Ric Weiland fellow and have received additional funding from the Russell Sage Foundation, The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the Lab for Social Research (LSR), as well as the Institute for Research in the Social Sciences (IRiSS). My work has been published in Social Science Research, American Behavioral Scientist, EMNLP, ICWSM, PLoS ONE and The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

Please feel free to reach out to me at my email:

avanloon [at] stanford [dot] edu