Challenges and Perspectives of Comparative Communication Inquiry

Authored by: Thomas Hanitzsch , Frank Esser

Handbook of Comparative Communication Research

Print publication date:  April  2012
Online publication date:  June  2013

Print ISBN: 9780415802710
eBook ISBN: 9780203149102
Adobe ISBN: 9781136514241


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The previous chapters in this Handbook of Comparative Communication Research aimed at providing a comprehensive understanding of comparative communication research, charting the field, and setting the agenda for future research. Based on the insights provided by our contributors, this concluding chapter offers a discussion of major challenges, as well as their conceptual, epistemological, methodological, and practical implications. In closing, we will point to future developments and suggest further directions for research. A sophisticated discussion about theories, concepts, designs, and methods in comparative communication research is only beginning to emerge (for early contributions see Hantrais & Mangen, 1996; Wirth & Kolb, 2004). In Chapter 30 of this book, Wirth and Kolb note that, relative to other disciplines, comparative communication research has just started to catch up and that it still has “a long way to go.” As argued in the Introduction (Chapter 1), comparative research entails several specific challenges that clearly set this kind of study apart from other types of research. These challenges reside in four distinct domains: at the conceptual, epistemological, methodological, and practical levels.

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