We’ll be at the Instagram Conference 2018: Studying Instagram Beyond Selfies (London 1st of June 2018) presenting our paper: “Methodological challenges in data analysis and visualisation: notes on mixed methods research on Instagram”
In this paper we will present our research on instagram, focusing on the methodological challenges present in the Selfiestories project. In this project we have approached the selfie practice in the context of user’s personal narratives (Georgakopoulou, 2016) embedded in the everyday. When managing a huge volume of data, the ways in which the combination of qualitative and quantitative data can be expressed and communicated -both verbally and visually- involves dealing with, on the one hand, how to synthesize the complex amount of data from different sources and, on the other, introduce complexity and nuances when analyzing and visualizing data. In terms of data visualization (Manovich, 2011), contrary to quantitative studies, in qualitative research it is very scarce, and practically does not exist in the case of a mixed methods (Knigge, 2006) research. This is part of the debate on how social sciences -and particularly ethnographic approaches- can develop more transparent, holistic and innovative ways to show meaningful results through data (Abramson and Dohan, 2015) but also is a matter of communication research in relation to complex narrative practices in social media. In this paper we will explore some related notions, such as standardisation (Kennedy et al 2016) and objectivity (Cairo, 2016) and the role that storytelling can play in organizing the information and contribute to innovation in this field.