Aman Abhishek

PhD student at the School of Journalism & Mass Communication at the University of Wisconsin-Madison

Hadoop Guide

Hi, I am a second year graduate student at the School of Journalism & Mass Communication at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

I moved to Madison, Wisconsin in 2015 to pursue a PhD in physics at University of Wisconsin-Madison after getting my bachelor’s and master’s degree in physics from the Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee, India. Back then, I was working in the field of particle physics, which seeks to understand the properties of the smallest particles in the Universe as well as the nature of the interactions between them. During my master’s degree I worked at CERN, contributing in a small way to understand the properties of the newly discovered Higg’s Boson, perhaps better known as the “God Particle”. At Wisconsin, I worked with the IceCube experiment which is a detector located at the South Pole and gathers data on an elusive fundamental particle called neutrino.

Social sciences had interested me since the beginning, but back in high school I had to choose either that or natural sciences to pursue - which speaks volumes about how the education system forcibly compartmentalizes interests, and as some say, kills creativity. After joining the physics PhD program in Madison, I started thinking about where my career is headed, and how I feel about my work not having any social relevance. In 2017 I decided to change fields and pursue a PhD in media studies where I can devote more time to understanding the society that we live in.

My current research pertains to understanding social media; specifically, polarization, network formation, information dispersion, and online political expression.