Research Profile in Communication Studies

The Chair of Communication Studies [de] primarily addresses questions and problems related to public communication. Research approaches the general conditions of social communication in the face of considerable changes to media (digitisation, cross-linking, commercialisation). Theories of communication and public, as well as the transformation of media systems, are just as much a focus of research as issues related to communication and media ethics. In contrast to many other chairs of communication studies and degree courses, the field of communication studies in Greifswald is just as interested in interpersonal and group-related media communication.

The members of staff perform research on e.g.

Dr. Jakob Jünger has been head of the DFG-funded project ‘When Is a Like a Like? Data-Generating Processes in Online Communication’ since 2019 and is investigating which different qualities, development contexts and processes form the basis of relationship structures in online communication.

Prof. Dr. Klaus Beck led a DFG project [de] on the development of the regional press and their varied coverage of events (1995-2015), as well as a DFG project on media biographies. His research primarily focuses on the development of journalistic quality and ethics under changing structural conditions.

The Chair of Communication Studies with a Focus on Organisational Communication performs research projects on the communication by, in and about organisations. In particular, it addresses the question as to how organisations deal with the discrepancies between ideal and reality in communication, e.g. between moral and deception, power and powerlessness or social responsibility and economic interests. Led by theory and empirical data, the researchers elucidate what is expected of organisations and their communication, which strategies persons responsible for communication use and how the organisations’ types of communication influence social development, public formation of opinion and internal collaboration. 

The members of staff perform research on e.g.

Kerstin Thummes is currently running an online survey to investigate which expectations citizens have with regard to companies’ transparency, their willingness to enter into dialogue and accept responsibility; and how they judge secretive, controversial and ambiguous communication strategies in various situations.

In her habilitation project, Martha Kuhnhenn compares the mass-media portrayal of Glyphosate in the German and American press. Which players and frames succeed in the investigated discourse and how does the linguistic design of the frames on both sides compare?

In his doctoral project, Timo Lenk would like to make use of the term paradox to describe certain counterintuitive communication phenomena. His research will also make use of approaches from analytic and continental philosophy, as well as organisational sociology and psychology.