Prof. Dr. Hartmut Wessler

Prof. Dr. Hartmut Wessler

Chair – Liaison Officer of the German Research Foundation
University of Mannheim
Institute for Media and Communication Studies
B 6, 30–32 – Room 425
68159 Mannheim
Phone: +49 621 181-2300
Fax: +49 621 181-1399

Prof. Dr. Wessler on Researchgate and ORCID

Hartmut Wessler is Professor in the Institute for Media and Communication Studies and Principal Investigator at the Mannheim Center for European Social Research (MZES). Hartmut Wessler studied communication, political science and sociology at the Free University of Berlin and Indiana University, Bloomington, IN. After an interlude at the University of Leipzig he pursued his doctorate at the University of Hamburg in 1994-1997. Afterwards he worked at FU Berlin before moving to the International University Bremen/Jacobs University as an Associate Professor in 2001. He joined the University of Mannheim in 2007.

Together with the members of his research team, he studies media debates and media events in the areas of climate change, migration/refugees, religion/secularism, terrorism as well as other pressing and contentious issues. In his projects he often employs standardized, automated or interpretive media content analysis of both textual and visual resources, but also uses interviews or surveys. He particularly focuses on integrating computational methods in his research and on developing multimodal (text + image) methods of media content analysis.

He has conducted research and taught classes as a visiting scholar at New York University, the Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, and the University of Zürich, Switzerland. His work was published in leading journals such as the Journal of Communication, Political Communication, the International Journal of Press/Politics and others, as well as by renowned publishers both in Germany and internationally. He was elected vice-chair of the German Research Foundation's review board for the social sciences (2012–2016). Since 2020 he serves as the liaison officer of the German Research Foundation at the University of Mannheim. In 2022, he was elected vice-chair of the German Communication Association (DGPuK).

Completed Project: Sustainable media events


  • Wessler, H. & Freudenthaler, R. (2018). Public sphere. In , (S. 1). Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press.
  • Wessler, H. & Löb, C. (2018). Jürgen Habermas. In , (S. 1). Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press.
  • Wessler, H. (2015). Deliberativeness in political communication. In W. Donsbach, The Concise encyclopedia of communication (S. 139–140). Chichester [u.a.]: Wiley-Blackwell.
  • Wessler, H. & Rinke, E. M. (2013). Öffentlichkeit. In S. Mau, Handwörterbuch zur Gesellschaft Deutschlands (S. 637–650). Wiesbaden: Springer VS.
  • Wessler, H. (2008). “Deliberativeness in political communication” – “Habermas” – “Knowledge interests” – “Political discourse”. In W. Donsbach, The International encyclopedia of communication (S. ). Malden, Mass. [u.a.] : Blackwell.
  • Wessler, H. (2008). Deliberation. In L. L. Kaid, Encyclopedia of political communication (S. n143). Los Angeles, CA [u.a.]: Sage.
  • Wessler, H. (2008). Medien. In S. Gosepath, Handbuch der Politischen Philosophie und Sozialphilosophie (S. ). Berlin: De Gruyter.