HBI – Leibniz-Institut für Medienforschung | Hans-Bredow Institut, Germany


The Leibniz Institute for Media Research | Hans-Bredow-Institut (HBI) examines media change and the related structural shifts in public communication. It combines basic research and research on knowledge transfer from cross-media, interdisciplinary and independent scholarly perspectives. Thus, the institute is a valued provider of problem-specific knowledge for politics, commerce and civil society.

The research perspective of the HBI focuses on media-based public communication, regardless of the individual technical platforms involved. The institute’s research focuses on how certain forms of media-based communication influence different aspects of our lives, such as politics, economy, culture, education, law, religion and family, and how they contribute to structural transformations. The fact that the research activities are problem-oriented also leads to a distinct interest in the “new” media – and it is the aim of HBI to contribute to their understanding as well as to their future shape.

The subject area requires interdisciplinary research, which is why the professional backgrounds of the Institute’s researchers are adequately diverse. The organisational structure of the Institute is based on two main subject areas – the field of communication science and the field of law – where the latter is not only focused on legal matters as such, but also on research concerning regulatory structures. Further, international comparative research is of increasing importance for the Institute. Thus, the Institute is actively involved in several international research networks.

Since 2019, the Institute is a member of the Leibniz Association and since then its name is Leibniz Institute for Media Research | Hans-Bredow-Institut (HBI). It is funded by the Federal Government, the land of Hamburg and the other Länder.