Institut für Kommunikationswissenschaft und Medienforschung (IFKW)




Funded Projects

Worlds of Journalism Study

Project Lead: Professor Thomas Hanitzsch

Project Team: Corinna Lauerer, M.A.

Funding: German Research Foundation (DFG)

Duration: 2021-2024

Description: The Worlds of Journalism Study is a long-term international comparative research project coordinated by LMU Munich. The study’s objective is to help journalists, journalism researcher, and policy makers to better understand the changes that are taking place in journalism, in particular the conditions and limitations under which journalists operate, their professional orientations, influences on their work and the social functions of journalism in a changing world.

Further Information: Project Website

Selected Publications:

Hanitzsch, T., Seethaler, J. & Wyss, V. (eds.) (2019). Journalismus in Deutschland, Österreich und der Schweiz [Journalism in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland]. Wiesbaden: Springer VS.

Hanitzsch, T., Hanusch, F., Ramaprasad, J. & de Beer, A. S. (eds.) (2019). Worlds of Journalism: Journalistic Cultures Around the Globe. New York: Columbia University Press.

Lauerer, C. (2018). Bröckelt die Brandschutzmauer? Werbeinteressen und ihr Einfluss auf journalistische Arbeit in Medienunternehmen. [Cracks in the Chinese Wall? Advertising interests and their influence on journalistic work in news media] In A. Czepek, M. Hellwig, B. Illg & E. Nowak (eds.), Freiheit und Journalismus [Freedom and Journalism]. (pp. 123-140). Baden-Baden: Nomos.

Steindl, N., Lauerer, C. & Hanitzsch, T. (2017). Journalismus in Deutschland. Aktuelle Befunde zu Kontinuität und Wandel im deutschen Journalismus [Journalism in Germany. Current findings on continuity and change in German journalism]. Publizistik, 62 (4), 401-423.


Precarization in Journalism (Prekarisierung im Journalismus)

Project Lead: Professor Thomas Hanitzsch

Project Team: Jana Rick, M.A.

Funding: German Research Foundation (DFG)

Duration: 2019-2023

Description: The project focuses on questions about perceptions and consequences of precarious employment among journalists in Germany as well as on the way journalists adjust to precarious conditions. To answer these questions, a standardized survey with more than 1000 journalists, and guided interviews with 50 media professionals in Germany will be conducted.

Selected Publications:

Hanitzsch, T. & Rick, J. (2021). Prekarisierung im Journalismus. Erster Ergebnisbericht März 2021. [Precarisation in Journalism. 1st Result report, March 2021] Retrieved from

Key Results:

  • On average, full-time journalists earn around €2340 per month. The number of low-income earners increased compared to past studies.
  • Full-time permanent journalists earn around €880 per month more than full-time freelance journalists.
  • Almost half of all full-time journalists stated that they could "always" cover their living expenses with their income from journalistic work.
  • Two out of five full-time journalists have a paid part-time job.
  • Overall, 43% of full-time journalists consider their work situation to be precarious.
  • The majority of journalists (58%) perceive their current employment relationship as "rather insecure".
  • Three out of five journalists have reported that their working conditions got worse since the start of the COVID pandemic.
  • Two out of five journalists (58%) believe that precarious conditions are threatening the quality of journalism.
  • More than two thirds (69%) of the interviewed journalists are generally satisfied with their job.