Which Urban Planning Academics Use Twitter and How

About 1/3 of planning faculty members use Twitter in a professional capacity. Semantic and network analysis of their Twitter use is helpful for reading the pulse of the field.

1 minute read

October 30, 2019, 10:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell

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Jason A. Howie / flickr

Tom Sanchez, professor of planning at Virginia Tech, recently announced new research that reveals the extent of Twitter adoption by planning faculty in the United States, in addition to insights into how planning faculty are using the social media platform.

According to the abstract to the paper, Sanchez provides the first attempt at an empirical analysis of how and why planning faculty use Twitter.

To complete the research, Sanchez identified a total of 324 Twitter accounts used for professional purposes from the over 1,100 urban planning faculty (the list is available online). One of the key points of the study's inquiry focused on the network aspects of planning faculty's Twitter use, characterizing users according to their connections to other users.

Findings include breakdowns by tweet type (e.g., retweet, quote, reply, etc.), popular hashtags, subject matter, and network influence.

Sanchez presented the new research, still in draft form but also available online [pdf], to the national conference of the American Collegiate Schools of Planning, which wrapped up over the weekend in Greenville.

Saturday, October 26, 2019 in Tom Sanchez

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