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Annual Conference 2023 of the International and Intercultural Communication Devision of the DGPuK in cooperation with the DFG Network Cosmopolitan Communication Studies

Out of the Comfort Zone: Challenges of Communication Studies in the Age of New Global Realities

The world is rapidly developing in a polycentric manner: Western dominance in globalization seems to wane, new wars are challenging the world order, migration and mobility are transforming the cultural foundations of society, and modern media environments add to a seemingly fundamental structural change. Communication and media studies must face these complex developments. Yet, so far its approach to the world has been highly selective, which is problematic given the dynamic reconfigurations of global conditions. For example, Eastern Europe and the global South are on the agenda today; however, selective interest and oversights of previous research have undermined our understanding of these developments. Therefore, not without reason, communication studies are also struggling for their societal position. In light of the contemporary global challenges, we need to ask whether our discipline risks losing its chance to contribute to the communicative restructuring of the world if it clings to old spatial references or indulges in one-sided media centrism. In which ways does communication research need to change in order to provide answers to global challenges? How can current research help to better integrate the “North“ and “South”? Which approaches need to be adapted to global realities, and how can “universalism” be achieved today? How can we identify, document, and analyze new phenomena in a more international comparative way?

This conference is held by the international and intercultural communication division of the DGPuK and the DFG-network cosmopolitan communication studies, which engages in a “deep” internationalization of the discipline. Therefore, the conference will include different formats: 1) panels with conference papers/presentations, 2) a PhD Workshop, and 3) public panel debates.

Registration and Location

The conference will take place on 16. and 17. November 2023 in Berlin-Dahlem at Freie Universität Berlin. It will start with a public panel discussion on Thursday evening (18.00 - 20.00) and continue with individual presentations on Friday (9.00 - 16.00). Conference participation is free of charge. This includes snacks and drinks during coffee breaks but no dinner or lunch invitation. Please register for the conference here until October 31, 2023.

Preliminary Program

16 November 2023

18:00 – 20:00

Public Panel Discussion / Evening Event (German language)

17 November 2023

9:00 – 9:15

Welcome Address / Introduction




PANEL 1: Cosmopolitan communication studies: missing links and outlooks for global knowledge production

9:15 – 10:45


Leaving the “comfort zone”: Mediatization research from Latin America and the (missing) links to European research. The undiscovered works of Latin American scholars

Stefanie Averbeck-Lietz

University of Greifswald

Structural, cultural, and individual embeddedness of academic cosmopolitanism


Pauline Gidget Estella, Johanna Radechovsky

TU Ilmenau

The quest for deliberative communication in Europe: From research to identifying best practices, from best practices to policy recommendations

Marcus Kreutler, Susanne Fengler

TU Dortmund

10:45 – 11:15

Coffee break





PANEL II: Global structural change of the communicative world?

Conceptual challenges of comparative media and communication studies

11:15 – 12:45


Fact-checkers: how to conceptualize these new actors in the public communication model

Regina Cazzamatta

University of Erfurt

Conceptual challenges and adaptions in comparative research: the concept of media accountability revisited

Judith Pies

Universität der Bundeswehr

A Comparative media literacy research in the age of digitalization in Indonesia and Germany

Danny Schmidt, Subekti Priyadharma

University of Erfurt / UNPAD Bandung Padjadjaran Indonesia

12:45 – 13:45

Lunch break




PANEL III: Global and transcultural spaces, old methods? Methodological challenges of global communication research

13:45 – 15:15


Deconstructing intercultural communication competence: A preliminary research on Indonesian (Elite) migrant workers in Germany

Aang Koswara

LMU München

Diversity vs. universalism - The methodological recognition of differences

Mira Keßler

Ruhr-Universität Bochum

Grasping the taboo: methods for analysing racism in public and private communication

Sabrina Schmidt

University of Erfurt

15:15 – 16:00

Meeting of the DGPuK-Division “International and Intercultural Communication” (Fachgruppe Internationale und Interkulturelle Kommunikation)




Prof. Dr. Carola Richter
Freie Universität Berlin
Institute for Media and Communication Studies
Garystr. 55
14195 Berlin Germany