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Communication in Times of Crisis

Communication in Times of Crisis

The project, funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), investigated the role of communication in times of crisis. It extends to the communicative practices of various actors, e.g. from the fields of science, politics, the media, and the general public in the context of a crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic. The results have been published in a German Arbeitspapier (PDF) :
  • Broer, Irene; Hasebrink, Uwe; Lampert, Claudia; Schröder, Hermann-Dieter; Wagner, Hans-Ulrich; unter Mitarbeit von Corinna Endreß (2021): Kommunikation in Krisen. Hamburg: Hans-Bredow-Institut, September 2021 (Arbeitspapiere des Hans-Bredow-Instituts | Projektergebnisse Nr. 59) DOI: https://doi.org/10.21241/ssoar.74139

Data were collected and evaluated regarding the following questions:
  • How do communications change in a crisis like the COVID-19 pandemic?
  • What is the role of certain actors from science, politics, and the media? How does it change in the course of a crisis?
  • Does the constellation of actors change when it comes to communications in times of crisis?
  • What particular developments in communicative practices can be observed? (Especially with regard to functional and dysfunctional aspects, e.g. the emergence of conspiracy narratives)?
  • What are the regulatory needs being discussed?
  • What are the findings on the role of communication in previous crises?
To answer these questions, we assessed and systematically evaluated the current state of international research and identify central lines of research. Besides, we conducted qualitative interviews with selected experts who represent different perspectives. Our expertise identified the further need for research and action concerning communications in times of crisis.

Sponsored by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research

Photo by Robert Metz on Unsplash
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Project Description

Coming soon.

Project Information


Duration: 2020-2021

Research programme:
RP3 - Knowledge for the Media Society

Third party

Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung (BMBF)

Cooperation Partner

Contact person

Dr. Hans-Ulrich Wagner
Senior Researcher Media History

Dr. Hans-Ulrich Wagner

Forschungsstelle Mediengeschichte
Leibniz-Institut für Medienforschung | Hans-Bredow-Institut (HBI)
Rothenbaumchaussee 36
20148 Hamburg

Tel. +49 (0)40 45 02 17-0

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