Felix Victor Münch is a PhD Candidate in the Digital Media Research Centre at Queensland University of Technology. With a B.Sc. in Physics (LMU, Munich, Germany), a M.A. in Journalism (LMU and German Journalist School, Munich, Germany) and work experience in online media brand communication as a UX designer and strategist, his main fields of interest are network science methods and online media. For his PhD project he develops a methodological framework and explores methods to make network science more useful for large scale media and communication studies.
Felix Victor Münch is a PhD Candidate in the Digital Media Research Centre at QUT, Brisbane, Australia. With a B.Sc. in Physics (LMU, Munich, Germany), an M.A. in Journalism (LMU and German Journalist School, Munich, Germany) and work experience in online media brand communication as an online media concepter, user experience designer, and strategist, his main fields of interest most recently were network science methodologies and social media analytics.
His Bachelor studies in physics (2007 – 2010) provided him the basics for developing his methodological toolset, with his Bachelor thesis focusing on the mathematical and computational modelling of a nonlinear dynamic system. His Master’s in journalism (2010 – 2012) was motivated by an ongoing interest in politics, society and social media. It brought him in touch with journalism, communication and media studies and gave him the chance to apply his natural science-inspired approaches to media studies by examining the suitability of news factors, commonly used to determine the relevance of broadcast or print news, to predict the popularity of online news on social media.
Subsequent experiences in broadcast, newspaper and social media as an editorial intern gave him hands-on insights into decision-making in classical media. Driven by his interest for computer science and information systems, and building on the research for his master thesis, he gained practical knowledge about the distribution of information on social media as a User Experience Designer, Copywriter and Digital Strategist for an online communication agency based in Hamburg (elbdudler GmbH, 2012 – 2014).
In his PhD research (2014-2018) he explored network science methods alongside media and communication theory in order to address questions about the structure and dynamics of public communication on a national to global scale. Thereby, the project leads to new, detailed, empirical evidence about the structure of communities and publics on Twitter as well as the dynamics of information diffusion within these networks. In doing so, it reveals epistemological implications of the use of network analysis algorithms that have been mostly ignored in media and communication studies to date, and outlines a methodological framework to establish the bridgeheads necessary to connect the two disciplines. Therefore, the project’s main outcomes are not only new empirical procedures, but also a theoretical and epistemological framework, enabling a researcher to develop, validate, and extend theory about a networked public sphere. His PhD project is in its final stages, and the dissertation has been submitted for external examination in July 2018.