The (Social) Media Observatory is creating a knowledge base, competency cluster, and data hub for the systematic observation of media-based publics, to support other projects within and beyond the FGZ.
This project, which is part of the Forschungsinstituts gesellschaftlicher Zusammenhalt
(FGZ, Research Institute Social Cohesion), aims to establish a "(Social) Media Observatory" (SMO). As a central organisational unit, the SMO will fulfil five essential tasks within the FGZ:
- the design and implementation of a technical infrastructure consisting of cloud-based virtual servers, a comprehensive database of social actors and organisations as well as specially developed open source scripts and freely accessible software packages, which will be used throughout the project period for a) continuous and actor-related and b) occasion- and case-related systematic observation of the media-based public (INFRA);
- the development and maintenance of a German-language "handbook" in the form of a wiki that refers to existing data sets, tools, software packages or similar in the field of "(social) media observation" (DOKU);
- the development of a training programme with regular biannual workshops for the collection and analysis of social media data (WORK);
- the establishment of a contact and advice centre, which supports the consortium partners in the pre-processing, analysis and evaluation of (social) media data in relation to projects as required, for example by means of consultation hours scheduled and project-based on demand (BERA);
- the cooperation with external institutional partners (GESIS, Social Science One) to ensure the secure, reliable, and long-term archiving of the (social) media data obtained within the consortium and thus to develop their potential for further use (ARCH).
Thus, the project does not pursue its own content-related question, but has the task of providing data, tools and competences to all interested projects of the FGZ in order to independently work on questions related to media-based publicity.