Rainer Freudenthaler

Rainer Freudenthaler, M.A.

Rainer Freudenthaler, M.A.

Academic Staff
University of Mannheim
Institute for Media and Communication Studies
B 6, 30–32 – Room 452
68159 Mannheim
Phone: +49 621 181–3667
Fax: +49 621 181–1399
E-mail: rfreuden
Consultation hour(s):
By appointment via E-Mail

Rainer Freudenthaler is a PhD student working as a member of the academic staff at the chair of Prof. Dr. Wessler. After studying Media Economics at the Hochschule der Medien Stuttgart he got his master’s degree in Media and Communication Studies at the University of Mannheim.

His research focusses on the pre-conditions of democratic public spheres, with a special focus on online publics. He uses different normative models of democratic publics for an assessment of political communication. His dissertation assesses the public debate on Germany’s refugee policy in traditional online news media, counter-public online media and social media. He is mainly using quantitative content analysis and computational methods, but also qualitative methods in his work.

He is teaching the seminars “Introduction to Political Communication Research” and “The German Media System in International Comparison”.


  • Wessler, H., Freudenthaler, R., Haffner, P. & Jakob, J. (2020). Öffentlichkeitstheorien. In I. Borucki (eds.), Handbuch Politische Kommunikation (S. 1–16). Wiesbaden: Springer VS.
  • Wessler, H. & Freudenthaler, R. (2018). Public sphere. In , (S. 1). Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press.