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Potential of big data


Prof. Dr. Ulrike Röttger

Prof. Ulrike Röttger

About the research project

Team:Prof. Ulrike Röttger, Dr. Christian Wiencierz (University of Münster)

Project completion: December 2017

Data is the currency of the 21st century. And the potential of big data for corporate communications is very promising indeed. Data can support the entire strategic communications process – from situation analysis and strategy planning to implementation and performance measurement. But what does that look like? In which processes can data support current communication work?

A team from the University of Münster developed an application model for this purpose. In addition, specific application areas, technical and organizational requirements, and ethical guidelines were identified.


  • How does knowledge emerge from Big Data?
  • What does a suitable data infrastructure look like?
  • What are suitable organizational structures?
  • Which competencies are in demand?
  • What are ethical guidelines for dealing with Big Data?


  • Comprehensive literature research on the state of the art in communication, marketing and business informatics
  • Survey of 35 communication, marketing, (business) IT and academic experts on the importance and use of big (social) data.
  • Two case studies at Robert Bosch GmbH: Four employees were interviewed in detail about their own area of responsibility, their understanding of content marketing and their work processes.

Research questions:

  1. How can big data be used in strategic communications?
  2. What are the requirements for successfully using big data in corporate communications?
  3. Where are big data applications already being used?