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What <digital> spaces do we live in?

Cyber<>Spaces stands for the University's vision to become one of the leading European centres of interdisciplinary basic research on the societal implications of digitalisation by 2028. Researchers from all faculties and disciplines are driving this goal forward.

The thematic focus on Digitalisation, Networked Society and (Internet) Cultures creates fruitful inter-faculty links at the University of Passau, spanning linguistics and cultural studies, business, economics, computer science, law and psychology. The involved researchers are working on topics such as changes in how we communicate and the phenomenon of filter bubbles in digital channels, data-driven platform economies and their ramifications for established organisations and regulatory policy, or the risks and opportunities of digitalisation for developing countries.

Projects related to guiding theme 'Digitalisation'

Our Strengths

<>Profile of the University of Passau. Since 2011 the University of Passau has been exploring the societal effects of digitalisation across all faculties. Examples of this are the Technik Plus development initiative, the federally funded SKILL project (webpage in German) and the establishment of the Passau Centre for e-Humanities, which is also funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Based on the fruitful co-operation in these, and many other, projects, scholars and scientists at Passau developed the thematic focus on Digitalisation, Networked Society and (Internet) Cultures. Building on past successes and strong performances in recent THE worldwide university rankings, including the THE Young Universities Rankings (of universities under 50), the University strives to become one of the leading European centres of interdisciplinary basic research on the societal implications of digitalisation by its 50th anniversary in 2028.

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<>International and interdisciplinary. Our researchers have access to the resources of the Passau International Centre for Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies (PICAIS), our central scholarly unit under the roof of the Researcher and ECR Support Services Division. PICAIS provides support for interdisciplinary project and conference ideas, integrating international visiting researchers into the research landscape at the University of Passau.

<>Excellent conditions for early career researchers. The University considers it an important building block for research excellence to afford the best possible support to its early career researchers. This is shown in the fact that our researchers are able to attract special funding lines and engage in top-rate research. Examples of this are the DFG Research Training Groups 2720 'Digital Platform Ecosystems (DPE)' and 1681 'Privacy and Digitalisation', the internationally-focused Junior Research Groups, and two certificate programmes in Digital Technology and Entrepreneurship, which are also funded by the Bavarian Ministry of Science through its digital innovation hub.

Research Insights

Günther Jauch, Moderator der beliebten RTL-Quiz-Sendung "Wer wird Millionär?". Foto: RTL / Stefan Gregorowius

Using data from the German version of the quiz show "Who wants to be a millionaire?", Professor Carolin Häussler and Dr. Sabrina Vieth have been investigating when people in the digital age resort to which problem-solving strategies.

Prof. Dr. Jan Krämer (links) und Prof. Dr. Andreas König im Gespräch.

Interdisciplinary, international, innovative: In their How-to-Wiwi podcast, Professor Jan Krämer and Professor Andreas König explain what distinguishes doctoral studies in the new DFG Research Training Group from other qualification concepts.

Interdisziplinäres Organisations-Team der DPE Ringvorlesung an der Universität Passau

The Research Training Group "Digital Platform Ecosystems" will be the University’s pivotal hub for leading-edge, international, and interdisciplinary research and advanced academic qualifications around a central phenomenon of the digital economy.

Topics explored by our early career researchers

Lviv, Stadt im Westen der Ukraine, nahe der polnischen Grenze. Foto: Adobe Stock

In the Ukrainian city of Lviv, sirens are howling outside while Oleksandr Rudyak sits inside, conferencing online with Professor Andreas König about his mater's thesis. And both have an idea.

Illustration einer Bankberaterin, die auf einem Bürostuhl sitzt. Die Zeichnung umgibt ein gelber und roter Schimmer, der die berufliche Identität der Frau veranschaulichen soll. Illustration: Isabel Groll

The paper “What Do I Do in a World of Artificial Intelligence?” has received the Best Paper Honorable Mention Award from the Journal of Association for Information Systems.

Schwarz-Weißes synthetisches Tiefenbild, das mit der in Benjamin Planches Diplomarbeit beschriebenen Methode (DepthSynth) erstellt wurde

For his outstanding doctoral thesis on CAD-based visual recognition, computer scientist Dr. Benjamin Planche has been awarded the Dissertation Award 2022 by the Franco-German University (FGU).

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international research partners

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scholars with an interdisciplinary mindset

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rooms at the University of Passau and any number of digital spaces

Professor Stefan Bauernschuster

researches empirical evaluation of political measures

How do political measures influence decisions made by individuals and families?

How do political measures influence decisions made by individuals and families?

Professor Stefan Bauernschuster has held the Chair of Public Economics of the University of Passau since 2013. Moreover, he is a research professor at the ifo Institute in Munich, CESifo Affiliate and a member of the Social Policy Committee of the German Economic Association. He is also one of the principal investigators of the DFG Research Training Group 2720.

Prof. Dr. Michael Grimm, Inhaber des Lehrstuhls für Development Economics

Professor Michael Grimm

studies technological change in developing countries, among other topics

What are the measures that enable developing countries to participate in global market processes?

What are the measures that enable developing countries to participate in global market processes?

Professor Michael Grimm has held the Chair of Development Economics of the University of Passau since 2012. He is also one of the Principal Investigators of the DFG Research Training Group 2720 "Digital Platform Ecosystems (DPE)". Prior to this, he held the posts of Professor of Applied Development Economics at Erasmus University Rotterdam, Visiting Professor at Paris School of Economics and Advisor for the World Bank in Washington, D.C. (United States).

Professor Rüdiger Harnisch

Professor Rüdiger Harnisch

researches communication spaces

Which spaces do we use to communicate online and offline?

Which spaces do we use to communicate online and offline?

Professor Rüdiger Harnisch holds the Chair of German Language of the University of Passau. He is a member of two project advisory boards of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences and Humanities and is a former member of the DFG Review Board for Linguistics.

Prof. Dr. Carolin Häussler

Professor Carolin Häussler

researches co-operation and innovation

How can we use and increase the innovative strength of fluid organisations?

How can we use and increase the innovative strength of fluid organisations?

Professor Carolin Haeussler has held the Chair of Organisation, Technology Management and Entrepreneurship since 2011 and has been bringing researchers from all over the world to Passau with the International Centre for Economics and Business Studies. She is also one of the principal investigators of the DFG Research Training Group 2720 "Digital Platform Ecosystems (DPE)".

Professor Harry Haupt

Professor Harry Haupt

researches data complexity

What modern statistical methods are there to analyse complex data?

What modern statistical methods are there to analyse complex data?

Professor Harry Haupt has held the Chair of Statistics of the University of Passau since 2012; since 2014, he has held the post of Vice President for Research and the Advancement of Early Career Researchers.

Prof. Dr. Stefan Katzenbeisser

Professor Stefan Katzenbeisser

researches cyber security and technical data protection

How can critical infrastructures in a networked world be protected against cyber attacks?

How can critical infrastructures in a networked world be protected against cyber attacks?

Professor Stefan Katzenbeisser holds the Chair of Computer Engineering at the University of Passau. He conducts research on cyber security in embedded systems, on secure critical infrastructures and on technical data protection. He is spokesperson of the new research cluster "ForDaySec - Security in everyday digitalisation", which is funded by the Bavarian Science Ministry and where researchers from computer science, law and sociology have come together to develop new types of technical procedures to provide security in day-to-day digital life. Besides participating in research projects on secure mobility, he is also involved in the research initiative "6G Research and Innovation Cluster (6G-RIC)" which is coordinated by Fraunhofer HHI and aims to develop mobile telecommunication systems of the sixth generation by pushing back the limits of technology.

Prof. Dr. Andreas König

Professor Andreas König

researches organisational change and executives’ personalities and communications

How do established organisations and their leaders respond to the discontinuities that emerge with digitalisation?

How do established organisations and their leaders respond to the discontinuities that emerge with digitalisation?

Professor Andreas König holds the Chair of Strategic Management, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship and is deputy spokesperson of the DFG Research Training Group 2720: "Digital Platform Ecosystems (DPE)" at the University of Passau. His research output is published in leading international journals such as Administrative Science Quarterly, the Academy of Management Review and Research Policy.

Prof. Dr. Jan Krämer

Professor Jan Krämer

researches the regulation of the Platform Economy

What conditions are required on the internet to create competition and innovation?

What conditions are required on the internet to create competition and innovation?

Professor Jan Krämer holds the Chair of Internet and Telecommunications Business and is spokesperson of the DFG Research Training Group 2720: "Digital Platform Ecosystems (DPE)" at the University of Passau. He is a Research Fellow at the Centre on Regulation in Europe (CERRE), a Brussels-based think tank.

Professor Hans Krah

Professor Hans Krah

researches media semiotics

How credible is the worldview created by the digital and analogue media?

How credible is the worldview created by the digital and analogue media?

Professor Hans Krah holds the Chair of German Literature and Film at the University of Passau. He generates ideas for the DFG-funded Research Training Group 1681/2 ‘Privacy and Digitalisation’, which is currently in its second funding term.

Prof. Dr. Kai von Lewinski

Professor Kai von Lewinski

researches the collision of jurisdictions in information exchange

What does the internet mean for geographically limited legal systems?

What does the internet mean for geographically limited legal systems?

Kai von Lewinski is Professor of Public Law, Media Law and Information Law at the University of Passau and chairs the DFG-funded Research Training Group 1681/2 ‘Privacy and Digitalisation’. Prior to this, he was the Academic Director of the Foundation for Data Protection in Leipzig.

Prof. Dr. Susanne Mayr

Professor Susanne Mayr

researches psychology and human-machine interaction

How does being connected online affect us as humans?

How does being connected online affect us as humans?

Professor Susanne Mayr has held the Chair of Psychology and Human–Machine Interaction of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities since 2015.

Professor Martina Padmanabhan

researches sustainable institutions

What opportunities and problems does digitalisation pose for the disadvantaged?

What opportunities and problems does digitalisation pose for the disadvantaged?

Professor Martina Padmanabhan has held the Chair of Comparative Development and Cultural Studies with a focus on Southeast Asia since 2012, where she implements new methodologies for interdiciplinarity.

Professor Ursula Reutner

Professor Ursula Reutner

researches cultural patterns

Where will digitalisation take us: towards a unified culture or ever greater diversity?

Where will digitalisation take us: towards a unified culture or ever greater diversity?

Professor Ursula Reutner has held the Chair of Romance Languages and Cultures of the University of Passau since 2009; since 2014 she has held the post of Vice President for International Relations.

Prof. Dr. Hannah Schmid-Petri, Inhaberin des Lehrstuhls für Wissenschaftskommunikation an der Universität Passau.

Professor Hannah Schmid-Petri

researches public debates – both online and off.

How are digitalisation issues publicly discussed and what consequences does that have for political processes?

How are digitalisation issues publicly discussed and what consequences does that have for political processes?

Professor Hannah Schmid-Petri is the holder of the Chair of Science Communication at the University of Passau and leads the Fraunhofer 'Science Communication' research group, which is based at the Fraunhofer Cluster of Excellence 'Integrated Energy Systems' CINES. She is also one of the principal investigators of the DFG Research Training Group 2720. She analyses public discussions on political issues such as digitalisation and climate change.

Professor Jan Schumann

Professor Jan Hendrik Schumann

researches consumer behavior in B2C relationships

How does it affect people when firms pass on their data?

How does it affect people when firms pass on their data?

Professor Jan Hendrik Schumann has held the Chair of Marketing and Innovation of the University of Passau since 2012. He is also one of the principal investigators of the DFG Research Training Group 2720. Since July 2013, he has also worked a director of the Institute of Market and Economic Research.

Professor Daniela Wawra

Professor Daniela Wawra

conducts sociolinguistic and cross-cultural research

How do culture and language shape analogue and digital interactions?

How do culture and language shape analogue and digital interactions?

Professor Daniela Wawra has held the Chair of English Language and Culture of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities since 2010. From 2018 to 2020 she was Vice President for Study, Teaching and Internationalisation at the University of Passau. 

Professor Thomas Widjaja

Professor Thomas Widjaja

researches on IT architecture management, data-based business models, and privacy

What changes when companies develop new services using customer data?

What changes when companies develop new services using customer data?

Professor Thomas Widjaja has held the Chair of Business Information Systems since 2016. He is also one of the principal investigators of the DFG Research Training Group 2720. Previously, he gained his doctoral and postdoctoral degrees at TU Darmstadt.

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