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Dr. Volker Grassmuck

Volker Grassmuck

Shaping our media – citizen participation in the future of public service media

Under constitutional law, public service broadcasting is subject to supervision by society, at a distance from the state and the market. Under European law, it must also serve to fulfil the democratic, social and cultural needs of society. This society is represented by representatives of social associations in the broadcasting councils of the broadcasters.

The starting thesis is that in the current digital transformation, society is directly asked to participate in the formulation of the future tasks of public service media for this society. This is followed by the more far-reaching thesis that the representation of society in bodies in a digital environment needs to be organised in a broader and more participatory way.

The project examines the digital structural change of the public sphere and its actors, existing participation tools and methods as well as the conditions for success in shaping society. The aim is to design and plan a nationwide citizen participation process on the future of public service media, which will be put up for discussion at a final event together with the Grimme Institute and, if successful, implemented afterwards.

Research focus

  • Structural change towards a networked public
  • Conditions for successful participation
  • Evaluation of participation platforms and methods
  • Points of contact for participatory design in broadcasting law
  • Networking of social actors

Curriculum Vitae

  • 1982 to 1987 Studies in Sociology at the Free University of Berlin. Diploma thesis “Vom Animismus zur Animation – Einlassungen und Auslassungen zur künstlichen Intelligenz”, Junius Verlag 1988
  • 1989 to 1995 Visiting researcher at the Research Center for Advanced Science and Technology (RCAST), Tokyo University
  • 1999 PhD “Closed Society. Medial and discursive aspects of Japan’s ‘three openings'” with Prof. Dr. Dietmar Kamper, FU Berlin, iudicium Verlag 2002
  • 2004 to 2009 Founder and project manager of “iRights.info, information portal on copyright in the digital age”, funded by the Federal Ministry of Consumer Protection, awarded the Grimme Online Award in 2006
  • 2009 to 2010 “Acesso a bens educacionais e culturais no Brasil” in the Grupo de Pesquisa em Política Pública para o Acesso à Informação of the Escola de Artes, Ciências e Humanidades at the Universidade de São Paulo, funded by the Ministry of Culture and Ford Foundation
  • 2012 to 2015 Scientific project manager “Grundversorgung 2.0 – Internet-TV für die neue Mediengeneration”, Leuphana University of Lüneburg, funded by EFRE and the State of Lower Saxony

Lectures and publications

Dr. Volker Grassmuck

Fellow at CAIS from April until September 2019