Studying Dynamic Social Processes with ARIMA Modeling
Vasileiadou E. and Vliegenthart R. (2013), "Studying dynamic social processes with ARIMA modelling", International Journal for Social Research Methodology, DOI: 10.1080/13645579.2013.816257
31 Pages Posted: 27 Feb 2014
Date Written: February 25, 2014
With the increasing use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) there is a wealth of longitudinal data available, which open up new research directions. This availability necessitates special analytical tools, namely time series analysis methods. The paper focuses on ARIMA modeling and provides an outline of how it can be used in social sciences to study dynamic social processes. It provides a typology of dynamics of social processes, using the distinctions between stability versus fluctuation of a communication process and exogenous versus endogenous changes. Five distinct types of dynamics of social processes are outlined: stability; linear trend; different attractors; permanent effect; not permanent effect. Further, the paper examines how these types can be analyzed with the use of ARIMA modeling, and what this means for understanding of the underlying social process. Conclusions are drawn for the use of ARIMA in social sciences, and for understanding of dynamics of social processes.
Keywords: ARIMA, time series, social dynamics, communication dynamics
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