Executive Education

Political Communication in Times of Disinformation

Alumni reunion of the first certificate programme with Anna Sauerbrey, journalist and member of the editorial board of the Tagesspiegel newspaper.

Fake news and disinformation have emerged as significant challenges for our society and policymakers over the past few years. The dangers associated with disinformation have only become more acute in the global health crisis triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic. In crises, fact-checkers and social media platforms often see their resources stretched thin, as populations all around the world are inundated with targeted disinformation designed to induce panic. In the modern media context, effectively countering such false narratives has become an essential element of successful crisis management and ensuring peoples’ safety. 

Supported by our partner, the Vodafone Foundation Germany, the Hertie School is offering a free certified training programme, focusing on the topics “Disinformation, fake news and science communication”.
This programme, which consists of four half-days, includes the following modules:

  • 12 May 2022: Disinformation and fake news (02.00 pm to 05.30 pm) 
  • 10 and 17 June 2022: Public discourse and science communication (02.00 pm to 05.00 pm)
  • 12 July 2022: Selected case studies and practical insights (01.00 pm to 05.30 pm)

The programme addresses professionals from politics, public administration and civil society who are confronted with fake news, disinformation and science communication in their daily work. It is especially designed for members and staff of the German Bundestag, policymakers, and administrators from the German federal and state-level government, as well as individuals from other aspects of the German political life. 

All course content will take place in German. For individuals interested in participating, please apply by sending an email to executive[at]hertie-school[dot]org.
The modules can also be attended individually. The number of spots available in the course is limited to 20 in order to enable the active involvement of participants and to facilitate individual exchange with experts.

The first half-day module titled “Disinformation and fake news” takes place on 12 May 2022. The module aims to equip policymakers with essential knowledge and skills needed to counter fake news and disinformation. Throughout the programme, participants and experts will look at numerous subtopics, including theoretical approaches, balancing misinformation and freedom of speech, the role of artificial intelligence in cleansing online information, the role of journalists in unmasking fake news, and the manipulation of election campaigns with online bots. The course will be taught in German. For detailed information, please have a look at the attached flyer.

Course lead and facilitators

  • Prof. Dr. Andrea Römmele is Course Lead, Dean of Executive Education and Professor of Communication in Politics and Civil Society, Hertie School

  • Prof. Dr. Annette Leßmöllmann, Vice Dean Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Dean of Science, Media & Communication, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)

  • Dr. David Lanius, Research Associate in the Department of Philosophy, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)

  • Prof. Dr. Lars Rinsdorf, Chairman of the German Society for Journalism and Communication Sciences, Stuttgart Media University

  • Ralf Paniczek, Journalist and Head of Research Unit, ZDF