Hartmut Wessler

Hartmut Wessler
Universität Mannheim · Department of Media and Communication Studies

Dr.

About

127
Publications
27,418
Reads
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1,747
Citations
Citations since 2016
44 Research Items
1173 Citations
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200
2016201720182019202020212022050100150200
Additional affiliations
September 2007 - present
Universität Mannheim
Position
  • Professor (Full)

Publications

Publications (127)
Chapter
Aus vier Traditionen normativer Demokratietheorie (liberal, republikanisch, deliberativ und agonistisch) leiten wir vier Kerndimensionen öffentlicher Kommunikation ab, anhand derer man die demokratische Qualität politischer Öffentlichkeiten messen und bewerten kann. Sodann fassen wir den Kenntnisstand zu den öffentlichkeitsrelevanten Leistungen pro...
Article
Full-text available
Alternative outlets can differ in their degree of partisanship, activism, and their opposition to a perceived news “mainstream.” We expect this could lead to diverging contributions to overall news diversity. We assess how mainstream-like, partisan and activist media differ from mainstream reporting concerning migration and refugee policy in German...
Article
The degree to which civility norms are upheld or violated is an important criterion in evaluating the democratic quality of public debates. We investigate civility across media types, political systems, and levels of socio-cultural division, offering a comparative perspective on how these factors shape levels of civility in public debates around a...
Article
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Conflicts perceived by the media, either within or across national borders, are a staple of modern societies. These conflicts become especially challenging for societies that are divided along religious, ethnic, cultural or political lines. In the light of such deep conflicts, the contribution of mediated deliberation to social integration moves ce...
Article
Dictionary-based approaches to computational text analysis have been shown to perform relatively poorly, particularly when the dictionaries rely on simple bags of words, are not specified for the domain under study, and add word scores without weighting. While machine learning approaches usually perform better, they offer little insight into (a) wh...
Article
Full-text available
This study is the first to compare the integrative complexity of online user comments across distinct democratic political systems and in discussion arenas with different primary use functions. Integrative complexity is a psycho-linguistic construct that is increasingly used by communication scholars to study the argumentative quality of political...
Article
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Research has shown how unpremeditated events can influence media attention and media framing. But how do staged political events influence patterns of news coverage across countries, and are such changes sustainable beyond the immediate event context? We examined whether the UN climate change conferences are conducive to an emergence of a transnati...
Article
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This article provides a model for how communication phenomena can be normativelyassessed using multiple normative perspectives simultaneously. We exemplify the proce-dure of multiperspectival normative assessment (MNA) using mediated reactions to ter-rorism as our case in point. We first identify the normative challenges related to thespeed and sub...
Article
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Digital archives that document real-world events provide new opportunities for large-scale analyses of how news coverage represents reality. We present a method and open-source tool for linking event data to news articles, and demonstrate its application with an analysis of event and country level predictors of terrorism coverage in The Guardian fr...
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The first step in many text-as-data studies is to find documents that address a specific topic within a larger document set. Researchers often rely on simple keyword searches to do this, even though this may introduce considerable selection bias. Such bias may be even greater when researchers lack the domain knowledge required to make informed sear...
Article
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In this study, we offer a novel approach to research on migration reporting by focusing on the argumentative substance prevalent in different online outlets. Taking German refugee policy as our case in point we map the role that moral, ethical–cultural, legal, and pragmatic argumentations play within journalistic, partisan, and activist outlets; an...
Article
We examined the validity of 37 sentiment scores based on dictionary-based methods using a large news corpus and demonstrated the risk of generating a spectrum of results with different levels of statistical significance by presenting an analysis of relationships between news sentiment and U.S. presidential approval. We summarize our findings into f...
Preprint
Full-text available
We examined the validity of 37 sentiment scores based on dictionary-based methods using a large news corpus and demonstrated the risk of generating a spectrum of results with different levels of statistical significance by presenting an analysis of relationships between news sentiment and U.S. presidential approval. We summarize our findings into f...
Article
Full-text available
With global media content databases and online content being available, analyzing topical structures in different languages simultaneously has become an urgent computational task. Some previous studies have analyzed topics in a multilingual corpus by translating all items into a single language using a machine translation service, such as Google Tr...
Article
Public communication is changing—a change manifested in a crisis of legacy media’s business models, the proliferation of new channels of communication and increasingly individualized media repertoires, among other things. Often, these changes are associated with sociotechnical innovations, i.e. with novel ideas, methods and applications emerging fr...
Article
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This study looks into how the combination of Islam, refugees, and terrorism topics leads to text-internal changes in the emotional tone of news articles and how these vary across countries and media outlets. Using a multilingual human-validated sentiment analysis, we compare fear and pity in more than 560,000 articles from the most important online...
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Open science and effective collaboration both require the sharing of data between researchers. This is especially true for computational methods, as the technical complexity and heterogeneous data sources often require collaboration between researchers in different institutions and jurisdictions. Many data sources, however, cannot be shared openly...
Preprint
In this introduction to the special issue we develop a conceptualization of self-determination in a digital world that spans the individual and collective levels. We take up the three empirical dimensions of self-determination that Ryan and Deci have distinguished in their motivational theory of psychological self-determination and transpose them t...
Preprint
Full-text available
Die Interrelation von Journalismus und Politik ist, in einem anspruchsvollen Sinn, zentral für das Funktionieren von Demokratie. Das Kapitel gibt eine überschau der wichtigsten normativ-theoretischen Ansprüche an diese Interrelation sowie relevanter empirischer Befunde zu ihr. Es beschreibt zunächst drei zentrale normative Demokratiemodelle und prä...
Preprint
Full-text available
Öffentlichkeit ist ein sozialer Raum, in dem unterschiedliche Erfahrungen und Meinungen ausgedrückt, allgemein interessierende Fragen diskutiert und kollektive Lösungen kommunikativ entwickelt werden. In Flächenländern wie der Bundesrepublik Deutschland sind die Massenmedien (Zeitungen, Zeitschriften, Fernsehen, Radio) und seit Ende der 1990er Jahr...
Book
Jürgen Habermas is arguably the most influential social theorist and philosopher of the twentieth century, and his imprint on media and communication studies extends well into the twenty-first. This book lucidly unpacks Habermas’s sophisticated contributions to the study of media, centering on the three core concepts for which his work is best know...
Article
Diese Einleitung zum Themenheft entwickelt ein normatives Konzept von Selbstbestimmung unter den Bedingungen digitaler Kommunikation, das die individuelle und die kollektive Ebene miteinander verbindet. Dazu greift die Einleitung die drei empirischen Dimensionen von individueller Selbstbestimmung auf, die Ryan und Deci in ihrer motivationspsycholog...
Article
Full-text available
This study develops and tests a theoretical model of viewers’ experiences of eyewitness videos (EWVs) in TV news reports and the resulting effects on perceived trustworthiness. It builds on qualitative research suggesting that the visual characteristics of EWVs cause specific effects, namely feelings of presence and empathy as well as perceptions o...
Article
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Journalist-source relationships and interactions are interpreted in this study as crucial mechanisms for linking different arenas in a deliberative system. To unravel these source networks, 106 semi-standardized interviews with journalists as well as PR professionals from government delegations and NGOs were conducted on-site three UN climate chang...
Article
Researchers have started to demonstrate that media exposure to outgroups can reduce prejudice. However, in contexts of segregation a bias to select ingroup-rich media might hinder exposure and prevent those positive effects. We conducted a survey study (n = 1,095) in South Africa, a context with a notorious history of racial separation and persisti...
Chapter
Full-text available
Die Interrelation von Journalismus und Politik ist, in einem anspruchsvollen Sinn, zentral für das Funktionieren von Demokratie. Das Kapitel gibt eine überschau der wichtigsten normativ-theoretischen Ansprüche an diese Interrelation sowie relevanter empirischer Befunde zu ihr. Es beschreibt zunächst drei zentrale normative Demokratiemodelle und prä...
Article
This study disentangles national and transnational influences on international journalism by distinguishing convergent issue framing from nationally specific narrative in news texts. In a comparative quantitative content analysis of the newspaper coverage in five democratic countries (Brazil, Germany, India, South Africa, and USA) during four UN cl...
Article
This paper presents the first fully integrated analysis of multimodal news frames. A standardized content analysis of text and images in newspaper articles from Brazil, Germany, India, South Africa, and the United States covering the United Nations (UN) Climate Change Conferences 2010–2013 was conducted using a subset of photo-illustrated articles...
Book
Full-text available
The article presents a best-practice guide for researchers interested in analyzing media communication about climate change (MCCC). It has been written by six researchers with extensive experience of studying how the climate issue is covered by media from various perspectives, be they scientific, democratic, or ideological. The suggested “best prac...
Preprint
We show that television news is considerably more deliberative inestablished (United States, Germany) than in defective democracies (Russia)and slightly more deliberative in a power-sharing political system (Germany)than in a power-concentrating system (United States). We further demonstratethat public-service channels, nonpartisan programs, and in...
Preprint
The terror attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in January2015 serves to explore the role of religion and secularism in mediatedpublic spheres. We argue that deliberative theory, including its recentcriticisms and extensions, helps navigate normative dilemmas presented bythe attacks. From a deliberative perspective, journalists sho...
Preprint
News frames are patterns of news construction journalists rely on to presentinformation to their audiences. While much of the research on news frameshas focused on their identification and effects, less work has investigatedthe specific contributions these different frames make to democratic life.Value judgments about distinct news frames are often...
Article
The annual Climate Change Conferences (COPs) held under the auspices of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) are global staged political media events that regularly provide occasions for contesting the framing of global warming in media coverage around the globe. This study assesses which professional group involved in...
Article
In contrast to the prominent individualistic view on self-disclosure, this study focuses on self-disclosure in groups of prior acquaintances that both meet offline and communicate online. It compares within-group self-disclosure between offline face-to-face (FtF) interactions and online communication via mobile messaging applications (MMAs). An onl...
Article
Full-text available
The terror attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in January 2015 serves to explore the role of religion and secularism in mediated public spheres. We argue that deliberative theory, including its recent criticisms and extensions, helps navigate normative dilemmas presented by the attacks. From a deliberative perspective journalists...
Article
Full-text available
This study examines the interrelations between journalists and communication practitioners from environmental NGOs. Taking the annual UN climate change conferences as a case in point we show that the exceptional circumstances of these events foster a temporary blurring of the professional boundaries between both actor groups that partly results in...
Article
Full-text available
Technische Innovation und der kommunikative Alltag permanenter Vernetzung Die Verfügbarkeit von mobilem Breitbandinternet versetzt mittlerweile wachsende Bevölkerungsanteile – in einigen Segmenten wie den hochgebildeten und einkom-mensstarken jungen urbanen Eliten sogar die dominierende Mehrheit – in die Lage, Dienste und Funktionen der Online-Komm...
Article
Full-text available
Globalized communication flows transcend and transform national borders. Transnational media outlets targeting audiences around the globe, issues of global concern are subjected to border-crossing public debates, media events receive transnational attention, and public diplomacy efforts succeed—and fail—in characteristic patterns around the world....
Article
We show that television news is considerably more deliberative in established (United States, Germany) than in defective democracies (Russia) and slightly more deliberative in a power-sharing political system (Germany) than in a power-concentrating system (United States). We further demonstrate that public-service channels, nonpartisan programs, an...
Article
Full-text available
This paper presents a multimodal research design for the standardized content analysis of climate change coverage in print media. The concepts of framing, narration, and visual representation are integrated into a single coding instrument that can be applied to large-scale media samples from different countries. The proposed research design combine...
Article
Full-text available
News frames are patterns of news construction journalists rely on to present information to their audiences. While much of the research on news frames has focused on their identification and effects, less work has investigated the specific contributions these different frames make to democratic life. Value judgments about distinct news frames are o...
Chapter
Full-text available
Öffentlichkeit ist ein sozialer Raum, in dem unterschiedliche Erfahrungen und Meinungen ausgedrückt, allgemein interessierende Fragen diskutiert und kollektive Lösungen kommunikativ entwickelt werden. In Flächenländern wie der Bundesrepublik Deutschland sind die Massenmedien (Zeitungen, Zeitschriften, Fernsehen, Radio) und seit Ende der 1990er Jahr...
Article
Wessler, Hartmut. (2011) A Common Ground in Studying Global Media? International Studies Review, doi: 10.1111/j.1468‐2486.2011.01077.x
Article
Full-text available
Transnational public spheres are defined as spaces of thickened public, mediated political communication that extend beyond the national territory. Synthesizing the existing empirical literature, the emergence of transnational public spheres in Europe is assessed by looking at five potential driving forces of transnationalization: (1) transnational...
Article
Full-text available
Osama bin Laden verschickt Videos an Fernsehsender und seine Anhänger pflegen zahllose Websites. Schon vor zehn Jahren erklärte eine neue US-amerikanische Militärdoktrin die Eroberung der Informationshoheit zur höchsten Priorität im Kriegsfall (Szukala 2005). Wer heutzutage Gewalt ausübt, sei es der Befehlshaber von Truppen oder das Oberhaupt einer...
Article
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Der Aufsatz befasst sich mit der Frage, wie wir den „soziokulturellen Unterbau“ von politischer Öffentlichkeit so konzeptionalisieren können, dass eine empirische For schung zur transnationalen Öffentlichkeit in Europa auf angemessene Weise möglich wird. Hierzu wird ausgehend von der vergleichenden politischen Kulturforschung, der international ver...
Article
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This article empirically addresses the prospects of contra-flow from the periphery to the center in international conflict communication. It investigates how Western international TV news channels used and framed material from Arab television stations in their coverage of the 2003 Iraq war. Utilizations of and references to Arab channels make up a...
Article
Full-text available
This article develops a normative model of public deliberation and proposes ways to apply it in the comparative empirical analysis of political media content. In the first part of the article, a set of normative claims connected to deliberativeness is explicated that revises some of the familiar claims found in the literature. Deliberative media co...