Education in times of global crisis: How private actors use momentum to gain power in online social networks

Author(s) Johannes Schuster; Nina Kolleck
Institution(s) Leipzig University

Beethovenstra├če 15, D-04107 Leipzig

Maybe further partner(s)
Theoretical framework/approach Social Network Theory
Research questions

Which actors are influential in the social media discourse on digital learning alternatives?

How have different public and private actors responded on Twitter to the sudden demand for digital learning alternatives in times of the COVID-19 crisis?

Themes / topics
digitalization; Twitter; education policy; social network analysis; COVID-19
Main findings of study / highlights
  • Twitter network is dominated mainly by individual education-related actors as well as by small and medium-sized enterprises
  • Twitter is used as a forum to promote products and platforms, also by globally operating companies such as Microsoft and YouTube
  • Public actors remain barely visible
Methods quantitative social network analysis
Analytic Appraoch descriptive; explorative
Desig of data collection

collection of publiclly available Twitter data using R package rtweet

Time(s) of data collection 8-23 March 2020
Kind of sampling, kind and number of sample

Twitter data: 7,426 tweets; 18,824 retweets; 3,627 twitter accounts

Geographical area German-speaking area
Project website

Further information
Repository Factsheet