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We are looking for a student with a background in English and linguistics interested in writing his/her undergraduate thesis in the area of political blogging. The thesis would be part of a project to monitor political blogs in the run-up to the U.S. presidential elections in November 2008, automatically tracking people’s attitudes toward parties, candidates, and campaign issues such as climate change.The aim of this thesis will be to create a dictionary of words and phrases indicative of people’s stance toward political issues, including:

  • Positive and negative verbs, nouns, and adjectives in standard English and slang
  • Positive and negative idioms and stock metaphors
  • Anger words and expletives
  • Joy words
  • Humor and irony

These expressions will help refine an automated tool employed in the run-up to the 2004 U.S. presidential elections to monitor the coverage of elections on media websites. The results of this study and details on its methodology can be found at http://www.ecoresearch.net/election2004. Monitoring for the 2008 elections will begin in July 2007. Thus, final results will be needed by June 2007. An excellent thesis completed within this time-frame will be rewarded with a bonus between 300 and 1,000 EUR.

pdf-logo.gif Thesis-StanceMarkers.pdf

Contact: Univ.-Ass. Dr. Irene Pollach
Institut fĂĽr Englische Wirtschaftskommunikation
Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien
Nordbergstrasse 15, A-1090 Wien
Tel.: 01-31336-6999

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