Benjamin Soltoff

Assistant Instructional Professor of Computational Social Science

University of Chicago

I am an assistant instructional professor in computational social science and assistant director of the Masters in Computational Social Science at the University of Chicago. I teach learners social scientific research design, computational modeling, data science, math/statistics, and data visualization.

I enjoy working with individuals from all backgrounds interested in applying computational methods to extract knowledge and inferences from a wide-range of domains. I have training and experience in data science and policy evaluation. In addition to my academic work, I offer consulting services for organizations interested in data science, including research and analysis as well as tailored workshops teaching programming skills to your employees.


  • Computational social science
  • American politics
  • Programming in R
  • Data visualization


  • PhD in Political Science, 2015

    The Pennsylvania State University

  • MA in Political Science, 2012

    The Pennsylvania State University

  • BA in Political Science, 2010

    James Madison University

Recent Posts

How Many More Palindrome Dates Will You See?

I'm currently on paternity leave and in search of quick but interesting programming challenges to stay fresh. The latest Riddler …

Winning the World Chess Championship

This week's Riddler Express from FiveThirtyEight: The World Chess Championship is underway. It is a 12-game match between the world’s …

Cubs World Series Puzzles (For Fun)

This week's Riddler Express from FiveThirtyEight: The best team in baseball this year, the Chicago Cubs, have clinched their playoff …

A Modified Draft Pick Selection Order

In preparation for teaching a new computing course for the social sciences, I've been practicing building interactive websites using …

Can You Best The Mysterious Man In The Trench Coat?

The latest Riddler puzzle on FiveThirtyEight: A man in a trench coat approaches you and pulls an envelope from his pocket. He tells …