The challenges of privacy, security and surveillance in the new emerging communications landscape

Project lead: Prof. Dr. Andreas Hepp (ZeMKI Lab "Mediatization and Globalization")

Project team members: Johanna Möller, Anne Mollen

Research association/cooperation: University of Tampere, Finland

Funding institution: Helsingin Sanomat Foundation

Project duration: 2014 - 2015

The political implications of media technologies have been discussed throughout society since the revelations of the whistelblower Edward Snowden on the late activities of NSA, GCHQ and, last but not least, BND. Questions of data protection and media competence, informational self-determination and the weighing of security concerns are relevant for all citizens in the digital society. Accordingly, communication and media science research is confronted with questions about the scope of this development as well as with the discussion about the political, economic and social possibilities and risks of comprehensive data collections. ZeMKI is involved in a transnational research network that investigates such questions using the example of the NSA scandal.

On the initiative of Risto Kunelius (University of Tampere, Finland), members of the ZeMKI and other international communication and media scientists formed a research network in London in spring 2014. The initial aim was to conduct a transnational comparative study of reporting in response to Edward Snowden's revelations since June 2013. This study was funded by the Helsingin Sanomat Foundation (duration: 04/2014 to 12/2015). A volume with the central results of this study and further topic- and country-related individual studies will be published in autumn 2016 in a series by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism.

ZeMKI is represented in the network of Johanna Möller and Anne Mollen. Further members are Risto Kunelius (speaker, Tampere), Olivier Baisnée (Toulouse), Elisabeth Eide (Oslo), Heikki Heikkilä (Tampere), Adrienne Russell (Denver), Damian Tambini (London), Silvio Waisbord (Washington), Hayian Wang (Hong Kong) and Dmitry Yagodin (Tampere).


Möller, Johanna / Mollen, Anne (2014): „Privacy, Security and Surveillance in the German reporting on the NSA scandal“, Vortrag im Rahmen des Workshops „Multi-method-designs in transnational and transcultural comparative research“, 20.–22.11.2014, Bremen.

Möller, Johanna / Mollen, Anne (2015): „Politicizing media technologies? Framing ‚technology’ within the German NSA press coverage“, Vortrag im Rahmen der Konferenz „Surveillance and Citizenship“, 18.–19.06.2015, Cardiff.

Important Publications

Möller, Johanna / Mollen, Anne (2016):„‘Please stay frustrated!’ – The politicisation of media technologies in the German NSA debate”, In: Kunelius, Risto / Heikkilä, Heikki / Russel, Adrienne / Yagodin, Dmitry (Hg.) (2016): „The prism of the NSA“, Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism: Oxford.

: Prof. Dr. Andreas Hepp
Prof. Dr.

Andreas Hepp

Institution Centre for Media, Communication and Information Research of the University of Bremen (ZeMKI)

Building/room: LINZ4 40200
Phone: +49 (0) 421 218 676 20
E-Mail: andreas.heppprotect me ?!uni-bremenprotect me ?!.de