Matthew A. Turner, Ph.D.

Hello and welcome! Below you will find a little more about my past, current, and future projects, and learn how I could possibly help you solve problems you face understanding and predicting human social behavior. I love learning about new problems and methods. Please contact me via email to talk more.


Code on GitHub



Extremism and polarization research

My research focuses on understanding the causes and effects of extremism and polarization, especially related to mass communication strategies, and communication-independent cognitive and social factors such as the human tendency to conform, especially when influenced by other people and facts that one already knows. I have begun a postdoctoral fellowship at Stanford University in September 2021 to expand and continue this work.

Consulting services

I am available for contract-based consulting, with two primary services. First, I offer services to help businesses and other organizations understand extremism and polarization among employees and members. I also provide assistance developing and implementing computational solutions for scientific problems generally, especially regarding social outcomes in business and society, especially those problems amenable to agent-based modeling. Please do not hesitate to contact me to tell me about your work and interests or tell me about problems you face in understanding and predicting the behavior of people in social environments, or scientific computing generally.

More about me

Before starting to contribute to our understanding of extremism, polarization, and other social phenomena, I worked on several diverse, computationally intensive problems. I have developed novel imaging systems, new forecasting methodologies for economic data, and cyberinfrastructure for integrated hydrological science in the intermountain West of the United States. Immediately before beginning my PhD work I was as a software developer working first as a data engineer at Economic Modeling Specialists, Int’l, then as a research software developer at the Northwest Knowledge Network at the University of Idaho. Before that I obtained a master’s in applied physics (with thesis) at Rice University in Houston, TX after obtaining undergraduate degrees in mathematics and physics at Syracuse University in Syracuse, NY.

It is undoubtedly important to develop deep, vertical expertise in one subject to significantly contribute to research literature on important subjects. I find it equally important, rewarding, and fun to expand horizontally to contribute to diverse scientific and engineering problems that require multi-disciplinary, multi-method approaches.