Pro and anti-vaccine advocacy on Twitter: An analysis of networks and discourses

Elena Milani is investigating how visual information about vaccinations flows within and between pro- and anti-vaccine networks on Twitter, and how its discourse differs between these two communities. Elena is conducting a social networks analysis to identify the groups and the influencers involved in vaccine debate on Twitter and explore their relationships, and she is applying discourse analysis to investigate the most shared images about vaccinations.

Scientific controversies, such as vaccinations, are debated in the mainstream media as well as on social media, especially Twitter. On Twitter, both pro- and anti-vaccine movements spread their messages among their target audiences, and share images, which could convey information more effectively than written text, and hence influence public opinion toward vaccinations. Therefore, to improve science communication of vaccines on Twitter, it is fundamental to investigate how networks represent vaccinations visually.

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