The Open Institute for Social Science is a member-driven academic community. We believe that high-quality social research will be the substance of a more innovative, more compassionate, and more equitable world. To get there, we are searching for new and better ways to practice our craft.

Our mission is to build a network of social scientists in the places that global universities aren’t, locating ourselves in the contexts and geographies more likely to be the subject of knowledge production than the home to agents of it. We value academic rigor, critical relevance, engagements with unconventional kinds of expertise, and open access to both teaching and research. Our members draw from a diverse range of methodological traditions, but our work is rooted in the forms of autochthonous theory intrinsic to ethnography. Above all else, we believe that social science should be exciting, challenging, empowering, controversial, and fun. If you are interested in being part of this project in ways large or small, reach out.

    Available courses


    This two-day workshop with Dr. Peter Graif will provide a practical introduction to IBM's SPSS statistical analysis package. No prior background in the social sciences is assumed, though some familiarity with basic research techniques will help participants to make the most of what they learn.

    This short course will help students get up and running with the R data analysis platform. The aim here is not to teach statistics or programming in any comprehensive way but rather to demonstrate R's capacities for those who might take their studies further in the future.
    What is evidence? What kind and quantity do we need? What can research do to tell us if our interventions are working? This one-day program will offer participants the methodological skills necessary to answer these questions and more. We will examine the range of techniques available to moder…

    This four-week workshop with Dr. Peter Graif will explore the process of designing a research project and communicating plans for its implementation. Our emphasis throughout this program will be on direct, actionable skills of writing and critical thinking.