Sonja Utz

Post-doc position (3 years, 100%) available in DFG-project on Benefits of professional social media use

Posted on December 2, 2019 by Sonja Utz

The project builds on the work of the ERC project (see On the one hand, experiments on ambient awareness will be conducted, on the other hand a measurement burst field study is planned, i.e. a combination of a longitudinal study and experience sampling periods. So I am looking for someone who is familiar with complex data analysis. Since there are many analysis possibilities with longitudinal data, the central analyses should be pre-registered. The candidate should thus also have experience with or at least be open for open science practices.

Job ad here

New project on the role of voice-based digital assistants in knowledge processes

Posted on July 15, 2019 by Sonja Utz

In the consortium project digilog@bw (Digitisation in Dialogue), scientists from various disciplines are investigating the influence of digitisation on the individual and society. Under the lead of the University of Mannheim, eight university and non-university institutions from various disciplines have joined forces (including GESIS - Leibniz Institute for Social Sciences, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research). They investigate three central topics of digitisation: autonomy, knowledge and participation Our subproject deals with the question how interaction with voice-based assistants such as Alexa or Siri affects knowledge processes such as the search for and assessment of information.

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Cluster of Excellence "Machine Learning for Sciences" granted!

Posted on September 27, 2018 by Sonja Utz

We were successful in the German Excellence Initiative! The next seven years, I will work with colleagues from computer science and many other disciplines on the question how machine learning transforms sciences. More information here

#Opendata - Data from the longitudinal study now available!

Posted on February 5, 2018 by Sonja Utz

The ERC-project has ended and the data from the longitudinal study are now available for other researchers at More information can also be found here

Filed under Opendata, grants

WissenschaftsCampus project granted, job opening coming soon

Posted on April 7, 2017 by Sonja Utz

Overcoming cognitive and motivational barriers for networking: contact recommendation systems in professional settings

Our Wissenschaftscampus project (Sonja Utz & Alexandra Kirsch (Department of Computer Science, Tübingen) has been granted. More details and job openings will come in a few weeks - PhD position and student assistant wanted (background in psychology, cognition science, or computer science).
Having the right people in one’s network is an important precondition for receiving valuable information, especially for knowledge workers. Since the rise of smartphones, many people are permanently connected with their networks and use professional social network sites for building and maintaining their networks. On many of these social network platforms, cognitive interfaces aim to filter the most relevant contacts from the vast amount of potential contacts in social media networks and provide users with contact recommendations (“people you might know”; “people we think you might want to follow”). Current contact recommendation systems focus however mostly on similarity in interests or common friends. This makes sense for interpersonal relationships, but less so in professional settings, especially knowledge work, where heterogenous networks and a higher proportion of weaker ties are more beneficial for receiving knowledge and creative new ideas. Thus, current recommendation systems do not suggest the most useful contacts for knowledge workers. Even more important, research in computer science has mainly focused on developing algorithms that extract matches without considering the question of acceptance, thereby neglecting recent psychological studies on the cognitive and motivational barriers that withhold people from instrumental networking. The current project is going to tackle both problems. It aims to develop a new cognitive interface suited for knowledge work by a) developing an algorithm which makes better contact recommendations for professional contexts, and b) incorporating theory-based and empirically tested ways of presenting the contact recommendations in such a way that people actually use them.

Filed under Grants

Eurostars project Dr.TIDE

Posted on May 1, 2016 by Sonja Utz

The Eurostars project Dr.TIDE (Digital Research Tailored Information Detector has started. More information here !

Filed under Research

Follow-up Study on social media use by scientists - academics from all disciplines wanted!

Posted on January 7, 2015 by Sonja Utz

Our follow-up study on social media use by academics is still open. In the first study, we had many psychologists and communication scholars, but we are looking for academics from all disciplines. The main focus is on ResearchGate, but also non-users of ResearchGate are cordially invited! Please share! Click here !

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Social media use by scientists - participants wanted!

Posted on July 15, 2014 by Sonja Utz

We are currently running an online survey on social media use by scientists. The main focus is on ResearchGate, but also non-users of ResearchGate are cordially invited! The study will be online until the end of July, 2014. Click here !

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Full professor

Posted on April 30, 2014 by Sonja Utz

Since April 30, 2014, I am officially full professor for communication via social media at Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen.

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Beruflicher Erfolg durch soziale Medien? TeilnehmerInnen für Onlinestudie gesucht

Posted on July 4, 2013 by Sonja Utz

„Das Geheimnis für beruflichen Erfolg? Kontakte”. Mit diesem Satz wirbt das professionelle Onlinenetzwerk Xing. Wollten Sie auch schon immer wissen, was Sie an Ihren sozialen Netzwerken haben und wie Sie die Nutzung optimieren können? Dann sind Sie genau richtig bei unserer Studie! Wir suchen Personen, die soziale Medien auch beruflich nützen (z.B. Xing, LinkedIn, twitter) und bereit sind, einige ihrer Kontakte um Rat bei einem konkreten beruflichen Problem zu fragen.

Hier geht's zur Studie.

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Building up my research group - open for collaborations!

Posted on April 11, 2013 by Sonja Utz

I start to get settled in Tübingen. I got a warm welcome from my new colleagues, and my PhD student, Chao Zhang started to work on the informational benefits of social media use. The student assistant will start next week, and the selection procedure for the post-doc has started. Together, we will examine the question how social media can support (organizational) knowledge sharing. I am open for cooperation with organizations in the area!

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Move to Tübingen

Posted on March 15, 2013 by Sonja Utz

By April 1st I will move to Tübingen and start as a research group leader at the Knowledge Media Research Center. Looking forward to this new position, my new colleagues and a new city!

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New year, new projects - ERC project ReDefTie has started

Posted on January 3, 2013 by Sonja Utz

January 1, 2013, was the official start date of my ERC starting grant project ReDefTie - redefining tie strength: How social media (can) help us to get non-redundant useful information and emotional support. I will start to work on the preparation of the longitudinal study together with Danielle Boshove (student assistant). The first PhD student will start in April. Looking forward to the next five years! Project website and twitter account will follow.

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PhD position - application procedure now open - deadline 12 november

Posted on October 30, 2012 by Sonja Utz

Application for the first PhD position within the ERC starting grant is now open!
This subproject focuses on the informational benefits of social media use, mainly on the automatic information processing of tweets and status updates. Therefore, I am looking for a candidate with a strong background in social cognition. Experience in experimental research is required as well as good English language skills. More information here

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Posted on August 8, 2012 by Sonja Utz

I'm just back from holiday and received two grants in the meantime :-)
The smaller one is a KNAW Academy assistant grant and finances two student assistants for the project Transcending or confining: how knowledge sharing among multi-embedded members transcends the boundaries between different knowledge networks. This is an interdisciplinary project between the knowledge, information, and networks (KIN) research group (Marloes Agterberg, Bart van den Hooff) and the department of communication science (Nicoleta Balau, Sonja Utz).
The bigger one is my ERC starting grant project ReDefTie - redefining tie strength: How social media (can) help us to get non-redundant useful information and emotional support. This project includes a longitudinal study of a representative sample of Dutch internet users and two PhD projects.

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Talk at Brown Bag Lunch in Jena

Posted on June 27, 2012 by Sonja Utz

I'm invited to the Brown Bag Lunch of the Jena Graduate School Human Behavior in Social & Economic Change. I'll give a talk on "Context collapse on social media: implications for interpersonal and marketing communication"

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Sheets Sowijs Symposium Social Community now online

Posted on June 27, 2012 by Sonja Utz

On May 14, 2012, the symposium 'Social Community' took place in Leeuwarden. We presented the RAAK project Social Community that focuses on the question how social media can be used to enhance citizen participation. I gave a workshop on twitter use by the police in which I presented the results of our first experiment and discussed the results with the practitioners in the audience. The sheets of all presentations can be found here.

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Digital natives' traces - Workshop 2012

Posted on May 2, 2012 by Sonja Utz

On May 4, I'll give a talk on privacy and self-disclosure on social network sites at the digital natives' traces workshop in Siegen. This will be an interdisciplinary workshop, bringing together people from social sciences, law, economics and computer science.

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Eurostars project

Posted on February 22, 2012 by Sonja Utz

Our Eurostars proposal has been granted! INFUSE (intelligent fund search) combines vertical semantic search technologies and social media knowledge sharing tools. The technology is developed by Scan4News, Norway, in cooperation with Gjovik University College, Norway. At VU university, two PhD students will focus on a) the strategic processes underlying information sharing and b) the development of new strategic marketing analysis based on the principles of network economics.

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Associate lector social media and reputation management

Posted on October 31, 2011 by Sonja Utz

From tomorrow on (1 November, 2011), I will work two days a week at the NHL Leeuwarden as associate lector social media and reputation management. In cooperation with insurance company achmea, we will study how organizations can and should use social media to increase or restore their reputation. I'm looking forward to conduct exiting research!

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Lecture on the role of social networks in marketing

Posted on May 13, 2011 by Sonja Utz

Friday, May 20, 2011, I will give a lecture in the course digital branding & social media, organized by the European Institute for Brand Management (EURIB), Rotterdam.

Filed under Teaching

Summer School Making sense of social media

Posted on March 11, 2011 by Sonja Utz

I will teach at the summer school Making sense of social media. Empirical research and future directions, organized by the Leibniz Graduate School for Knowledge Media Research and the ScienceCampus Tuebingen. Looking forward to work with enthousiastic and talented students at a beautiful place!

Filed under Teaching

Top paper at ICA 2011 in Boston

Posted on March 10, 2011 by Sonja Utz

The paper "Crisis PR in social media: An experimental study of the effects on organizational crisis responses on Facebook", (Kerkhof, Beugel, Beukeboom, & Utz) has been selected as a Top Paper in Public Relations. It will be presented on May 29, 3p.m. at ICA in Boston.

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Posted on November 9, 2010 by Sonja Utz

I have been nominated for the Research Price of the Faculty of Social Sciences (Best Researcher of the Faculty 2010) and the Jenny Gierfeld Fellowship.

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Interview about the consequences of reading blogs

Posted on October 4, 2010 by Sonja Utz

Why do people often feel bad after reading the blog posts of other people? Interview in der Süddeutschen Zeitung (German)

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Best empirical conference paper award

Posted on July 1, 2010 by Sonja Utz

Wolfgang Steinel, Lukas Koning and I received the award for the BEST EMPIRICAL CONFERENCE PAPER at the 23rd Annual Conference of the International Association for conflict Management (IACM) in Boston, Massachusetts. The paper is also conditionally accepted by OBHDP.

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Keynote at "Online communication. Decoding the digital revolution - trends and tools in corporate communication"

Posted on October 20, 2009 by Sonja Utz

Thursay, October 22, I will give the keynote at the conference "Online communication. Decoding the digital revolution - trends and tools in corporate communication", here in Amsterdam. This conference is organized by the Quadriga University of Applied Sciences (Berlin), and it deals with the use of social media for corporate communication, reputation management, PR and viral marketing. Speakers from companies such as SAP, Philips, Microsoft or NGOs as Amnesty International will present case on how they use social media. I'm looking forward to this interesting conference!

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Talks, talks, talks

Posted on September 14, 2009 by Sonja Utz

It's been/is a busy month. The semester has started again, I gave a presentation at the conference of the German social psychologists and another one at the conference of the German media psychologists . Next week, I will give an invited presentation on the impact of the internet on social relationships. This has been organized by LaRed, a professional networking organization.

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Symposium on Online Research

Posted on May 29, 2009 by Sonja Utz

The Erasmus Research Institute of Management and Globalpark organize a symposium on "Online research: Insights into methods and their application in practice" in Rotterdam. I will present the results of two online experiments in my talk "The reparation of trust after negative feedback - the results of two online experiments among eBay users".

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Talk on "online communication and interaction - from the Usenet to Social Network Sites" in Marburg

Posted on November 19, 2008 by Sonja Utz

I've been invited to give a talk at the conference of the psychology division of the Cusanuswerk. The topic is "Encounters in Cyberspace - social life with and within the Internet"

Filed under Presentations


Welcome to my website!

Posted on August 1th, 2008 by Sonja Utz

Here you can find some information about my research, my publications and my background. Enjoy :)

Filed under Uncategorized