Graduate Research Assistant Position at the Moore School of Business

Dear Students,

We are looking for a graduate student to work with us on a funded research project. This project provides the opportunity to work on a realistic application that could enhance your resume and experience in business analytics. Below is a brief description of the project. If you are interested, please email us your resume, transcript, and a brief statement explaining why you are interested.

Project Title: Investigating the Effect of User Generated Content on Hotel Demand, Pricing and Competition

The objective of this work is to investigate the effect of user generated content (UGC), in the form of online reviews, on hotel demand and pricing, relative to close competition. The intended outcomes of this research is not only to contribute to the literature on social media and revenue management but also provide hoteliers with insights on the effect of star ratings as well review sentiment on demand.

Project Requirements:

To achieve our research objectives, we need a student to systematically collect data, primarily scraping review data from popular online review platforms such as TripAdvisor, Expedia and We plan to collect data from at least 100 properties over 3 years or more. Since the data will contain both numerical ratings as well review text, it will constitute a large-scale dataset, and the proper storing and cleaning of the data will be necessary before analysis. We estimate that the amount of work required will span over 8 months. The student worker will be compensated with an hourly pay.

Required skills:

  • Experience with web scraping – such as Python, R, PHP, Java
  •  Experience with handling large-scale datasets – such as R, SQL, SAS, Stata, Matlab
  •  (Optional) Experience with statistical software – such as R, SAS, Stata
  •  (Optional) Experience with text mining – such as R, SAS, JMP
  •  Good written and oral communication skills

Pelin Pekgun, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Management Science Department
Darla Moore School of Business
1014 Greene Street • Columbia, SC 29208
E: O: 803-777-2648

Ram Janakiraman, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Marketing
Business Partnership Foundation Research Fellow
Marketing Department
Darla Moore School of Business
1014 Greene Street • Columbia, SC 29208
e: o: 803-777-0534