Acronym DigiPatch (Reference Number: CHANSE-518)
Duration 01/10/2022 - 01/10/2025
Project Topic The rise of digitalization provides people with unlimited possibilities in terms of informing and expressing themselves, as well as sharing their opinions and communicating with each other, and thus enables them to develop new and multiple social ties. However, it also drives the irruption of various kinds of closed (micro)groups with their strong identities, strong in-group ties, and their own epistemic realities. The main aim of the project is to investigate the role of digitalization in social and cultural transformation, i.e., a process of moving parts of society from more open, permeable, flexible networks, to more closed, bounded, rigid “little boxes'' – a patchwork society. Following much theory and research showing that individuals are not merely passive targets of algorithms, who inadvertently stumble into a ‘miasma’ of biased information and dubious networks, this project proposes to provide a much needed understanding of how psychological needs, cognitive biases and processes of social influence in the digital (and real) world interact to give rise to virtual loyalties, and the construal of parallel social realities lacking social cohesion. We have framed our analysis in a 3N theoretical model (need, narratives, networks), based on the assumption that considerable frustration with respect to fundamental human needs (the need for security and certainty, the need for significance) motivates people to develop beliefs that satisfy them (narratives), and incentivizes them to build (or engage in) the community of all those who share this dissatisfaction (network). To address these questions, we plan to apply a variety of advanced methodologies which combine large scale analysis of a transnational three-wave panel survey, laboratory experiments, field studies, social network designs, computational simulation and cultural analysis.
Network CHANSE
Call Transformations: Social and Cultural Dynamics in the Digital Age

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
1 Jagiellonia University Coordinator Poland
2 University of Gothenburg Partner Sweden
3 Freie Universität Berlin Partner Germany
4 University of Cordoba Partner Spain
5 University College London Partner United Kingdom
6 Maryland University, US Observer United States
7 German Institute on Radicalization and De-Radicalization Studies Observer Germany
8 Maastricht University Observer Netherlands
9 Copernicus Science Center Observer Poland
10 Chinese University of Hong Kong Observer Hong Kong