Research focus: Natural language processing, Computational sociolinguistics, Computational Social Science, Social media
Dong Nguyen is assistant professor in Computer Science at Utrecht University. She is a member of the Natural Language Processing group and heads the NLP and Society Lab. Since May 2019 Nguyen holds a tenure-track position at Utrecht University. She is a recipient of the KNAW Early Career Award 2019. She has a PhD from the University of Twente and a master’s degree from Carnegie Mellon University.
Dong Nguyen conducts research into natural language processing, the processing and analysis of natural language with computers. She is particularly interested in computational text analysis for exploring research questions from the social sciences. Most of her research focuses on social media data.
NLP for computational social science
Massive digital datasets, such as social media data, provide the opportunity to study language use and behaviour in a variety of social situations on a very large scale. However, to fully leverage their potential, new computational approaches are needed. Dong Nguyen is a co-PI of an NWO Digital Society Project, an interdisciplinary project on the analysis of online conversations that started in 2020. She is also interested in measuring and explaining biases and robustness of NLP models and the development of NLP models for measuring social phenomena.
Setting up a new research area in computational sociolinguistics
Dong plays an important role in setting up the new research area computational sociolinguistics, the research area that aims to use computational methods to model and study the relation between language and society. In June 2019 she received a Veni grant from NWO. In her Veni project she investigates how computers can learn the social aspects of language use with neural networks.
Nguyen has appeared in the media several times with her research, including in the New York Times, Volkskrant and NRC and on Radio 538.