ESR Name: Vladimir Bojarskich

Institution: Friedrich Schiller University Jena

Supervisor(s): Prof. T. Rothmund

Project Title: Hate speech in polarized political controversies – communicative dynamics and prospects of prevention.

Project Synopsis: Hate speech is a recurring phenomenon in online environments that surges in times of political upheaval and has repercussions for its victims as well as for public political discourse and participation. The aim of this project is to identify and examine the communicative dynamics through which online hate speech on politically contentious issues emerges and to identify possible interventions. For that purpose, we will 1) systematically review existing research on the psychological predictors of and interventions against online hate speech, 2) experimentally examine the communicative social and ideological dynamics causing online hatred, and 3) design and test an intervention directed at its roots.

ESR Biography: Vladimir Bojarskich is a PhD candidate at the Institute of Communication Science at the Friedrich Schiller University Jena in Germany. His current research deals with the psychological emergence and mitigation of online hatred. Generally speaking, he is interested in understanding the social, moral, and ideological motives that drive people's (dis)engagement with contemporary political issues (e.g., polarization, climate change). To answer his research questions, he typically applies quantitative methods, survey studies, experiments, and statistical analyses. Past and ongoing projects include experimental research on the cognitive and social processes that lead people to develop moral convictions about domestic flights and how these relate to social distancing and cooperativeness; research on how political leaders may influence voters’ climate change beliefs; studies on the relationships between people's (moral) values, political orientation, and pro-environmental policy support; and research on how people in online conversations regulate norms regarding sexism.  He holds a Research Master's degree in Behavioural and Social Sciences with a specialization in Social and Organisational Psychology and a Bachelor's in Psychology from the University of Groningen, the Netherlands.