Alexa Keinert (Former Members)

B05 : Translocal Networks II

Research Associate

Freie Universität Berlin
Institute for Media and Communication Studies
Otto-von-Simson-Straße 3
14195 Berlin

+49 (0)30 838 66536



  • Since 10/2020

    Research associate on project B05 “Translocal Networks” of the CRC 1265 “Re-figuration of Spaces”, Department of Media and Communication Studies, Freie Universität Berlin

  • 02/2019 – 01/2021

    Research associate on project “Digital Transformation of Local Public Spheres” (Prof. Dr. Ulrike Klinger), Department of Media and Communication Studies, Freie Universität Berlin

  • 10/2016 – 12/2018

    M.A. “Media and Political Communication”, Freie Universität Berlin

  • 02/2014 – 12/2018

    Student assistant on a sub-project of the DFG-funded research group “Political Communication in the Online World”, Institute for Media and Communication Studies, Freie Universität Berlin

  • 10/2012 – 09/2016

    B.A. “Media and Communication Studies” and “Political Science”, Freie Universität Berlin

Research Focus

    • Public spheres theory

    • Communication and space

    • Social media and social movements

    • Mixed methods design, especially network and content analysis


Working title: The constitution of communication spaces. Mapping space-related mediatised practices in a German climate justice discourse

Increasingly, theoretical works call for a consideration and analytical inclusion of the spatial dimension of public communication. Empirical research addresses this research gap, investigating for example the geography of Twitter networks or the impact of proximity and distance on the propensity of network ties. However, the research all too often remains on this structural level, leaving out questions of how and why communicating actors connect to distant others or non-local issues. How are translocal communicative ties made? Which practices sustain the localisation of actors and which practices further communication across borders and scales? What is the spatial dimension of public communication practices such as imagining an audience? Social movement research, on the other hand, has conceptualised the role of spaces, places and scale for the emergence and efficacy of political actions and protest, such as the “spaces of engagement” (Cox, 1998) or “scales of justice” (Fraser, 2008). Those concepts emphasise the importance of translocal, strategic connections for social movement actors. But which communicative practices help build those spaces of engagement? A practice-based perspective combined with a mixed methods approach is particularly suitable to answer these questions of “how”, bridging the level of micro-level actions and macro-level structure. Investigating the case of a prominent climate justice movement in Germany, gathering under the slogan of „Hambacher Forst Bleibt“ or #HambiBleibt, the dissertation project will integrate insights from interviews with actors involved in the discussion and protests, qualitative analysis of social media posts including visual material, and spatial networks analysis of the public discourse on Twitter. Using mapping techniques, the dissertation project aims to retrace and create as comprehensive a picture as possible of the mediatised practices of constituting a communication space. Reflecting on the research process and drawing on insights from the case study, the thesis will discuss proposals to substantiate a practice- and space-based perspective in communication research.


    • Fischer, R., Keinert, A., Jarren, O., & Klinger, U. (2021). What constitutes a local public sphere? Building a monitoring framework for comparative analysis. Media and Communication, 9(3), 74-85. doi: 10.17645/mac.v9i3.3984

    • Keinert, A., Stoltenberg, D., Pfetsch, B., & Waldherr, A. (in press). Auf der Suche nach translokalen Öffentlichkeiten. In J. Hoerning & P. Misselwitz (Eds.), Räume in Veränderung: Ein visuelles Lesebuch. Ein- und Ausblicke des interdisziplinären Forschungsverbundes zur Refiguration von Räumen. Transcript.

    • Keinert, A., Sayman, V., & Maier, D. (2021). Relational communication spaces: Infrastructures and discourse practices. Media and Communication, 9(3), 86-96. doi: 10.17645/mac.v9i3.3988

    • Keinert, A., Heft, A., & Dogruel, L. (2019): Wie sehen News Entrepreneurs die Zukunft ihrer Profession? Vier Thesen zum Journalismus von morgen. In: Journalistik. Zeitschrift für Journalismusforschung, 2(3), S. 171-188.

    • Maier, D., Waldherr, A., Miltner, P., Wiedemann, G., Niekler, A., Keinert, A., Pfetsch, B., Heyer, G., Reber, U., Häussler, T., Schmid-Petri, H., & Adam, S. (2018): Applying LDA topic modeling in communication research: Toward a valid and reliable methodology. Communication Methods and Measures (Special Issue: Computational Methods), 12(2-3), 93-118.