The focus of research at the division is centered on the study of the transformations of the political communication of citizens, particularly in connection with the distribution of digital and online media. The comprehension of “media use” is not limited to the mere reception of content, spread by mass media. In the new media world, “use” also includes the meaning of the active development of media and content for each type of communication by the people.

The division also looks at the subject of relevant political consequences of the patterns of digital media use: Thus, it is necessary to go beyond the limited concepts of political mobilization or political beliefs approach to explain the effects of the changing communication environment on the political actions of individuals and political processes in society. Especially the following question is relevant: How do the individual's perception of its political role and the evaluation of the political process change, when the interaction and the participation opportunities are expanded by digital media?


Television and Internet

Prof. Dr. Martin Emmer, Prof. Dr. Joachim Trebbe

Jan 01, 2015 — Dec 31, 2017

Parallel to the emergence of the internet the phenomenon of digitization has pushed forward the transformation of traditional media and forms of communication. Popular terms like Social TV, Second Screen or Multi-optional TV indicate that television, which is still the most popular medium of our society, is placed at the center of these developments. Communication science is faced with the challenge to describe those marketing-oriented terms systematically as well as testing and, if necessary, ...

Digital Africa

Prof. Dr. Martin Emmer

The diffusion of digital information and communication technologies (ICTs) in the Global South is proceeding at a high speed. The development in sub-Saharan Africa is particularly dynamic, where more and more people have access to ICTs, with smart phones being on the increase. However, so far the main body of research on the impact of ICT use has been conducted in western or industrialized nations, such as the USA, European or East Asian countries. The theoretical approaches, which were ...

Citizens Online

Prof. Dr. Gerhard Vowe, Prof. Dr. Jens Wolling, Prof. Dr. Martin Emmer

A range of projects funded by Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), in which Prof. Martin Emmer was significantly involved, provided the basis for the currently planned research within our division. In these projects - conducted between 2001 and 2010 - it has been explored, which impact the spread of the Internet has on political communication and participation behavior of German citizens. Extensive information about this research (list of publications about this project, presentations of the ...

Flight 2.0

Prof. Dr. Carola Richter, Prof. Dr. Martin Emmer

Apr 01, 2016 — Dec 31, 2016

The research project "Flight 2.0" utilizes a representative quantitative survey in refugee housing in Berlin in order to investigate the refugees’ use of mobile devices during the journey from their home countries to Germany. The object of scientific analysis is the refugees’ media usage not only during, but also before and after the flight.

Research — finished

Automated measurement

Prof. Dr. Martin Emmer, Prof. Dr. Lutz Prechelt

Sep 01, 2015 — Feb 28, 2016

When collecting data about the individual use of digital and mobile media conventional social science methods such as interviewing, observing or media diaries are limited. Use situations on the internet are complex and diverse. Therefore, a systematic and detailed monitoring by innovative data collection methods and combinations of methods is necessary. Especially automated collection methods, such as log-file-analyses, seems useful. Nevertheless, such methods are not often used in empirical ...