Sarah Geber

Sarah Geber, Dr.

Oberassistentin / Senior Research and Teaching Associate

Phone: +41 44 635 20 26

Room number: AND 3.34

s.geber@ikmz.uzh.ch

Biographical Note

Sarah Geber has been Senior Research and Teaching Associate at the Department of Communication and Media Research at the University of Zurich since September 2018. In the fall semester of 2021, she was Interim Professor at the Institute for Media and Communication Studies at the University of Mannheim. She was also a visiting scholar at the University of Amsterdam and George Washington University.

She studied Media Management (B.A., M.A.) from 2005 to 2011 at the Department of Journalism and Communication Research at the University of Music, Drama, and Media Hanover. After her studies, she worked as Research and Teaching Assistant in Hanover, where she also received her doctorate in 2016.

Her fields of interest are health, risk, and crisis communication, media use and effects research, and political communication. Across these fields, her research focuses on the social dimension of individual behavior and the significance of digitalization in this context. Currently, she is working on the influence of communication and social norms on health, risk, and crisis behavior, such as prevention behavior during the Covid-19 pandemic (e.g., wearing masks, vaccination) or risk behavior among young people (e.g., alcohol consumption). Furhermore, she examines the role of social norms regarding digital media use (e.g., smartphone use in the presence of others).

 

Current Functions

Co-Principal Investigator of the project Covid-Norms: Monitoring and Analyzing Preventive Behavior, funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation covid-norms.ch

Chair of the Community Communication of the Digital Society Initiative of the University of Zurich, communication.dsi.uzh.ch

Co-Founding und Managing-Editor of the European Journal of Health Communication ejhc.org

 

Curriculum Vitae

09/2022 Visiting Scholar at the University of Amsterdam (Netherlands)
08/2021-01/2022 Interim Professor at the University of Mannheim (Germany)

since 09/2018                

Senior Research and Teaching Associate at the Department of Communication and Media Research, University of Zurich (Switzerland)

12/2016-08/2018

Postdoctoral Research and Teaching Assistant at the University of Music, Drama, and Media Hanover (Germany)

11/2016

Doctorate (Dr. phil.) at the University of Music, Drama, and Media Hanover (Germany)

09/2011-11/2016

Doctoral Research and Teaching Assistant at the University of Music, Drama, and Media Hanover (Germany)

01/2008-05/2008

Studies of Communication Science (Erasmus) at the Stendhal University III, Grenoble (France)

10/2005-08/2011

Bachelor and Master studies of Media Management at the University of Music, Drama, and Media Hanover (Germany)

Teaching and Research Interests

Health, risk, and crisis communication, especially the  of social norms and normative communication for health, risk, and crisis behavior in a digital society (e.g., Covid 19 prevention behaviors, adolescents’ risk behaviors).

Media use and media effects, especially the role of social norms with regard to media use in a digital society (e.g., smartphone use in the presence of others).

Political communication, especially opinion leadership and political conversations.

Empirical methods and statistics, especially the collection and analysis of relational (e.g., dyads and ego-centered networks) and monitoring of dynamic communication processes.

 

Research Grants

2021   

 

Tracing-technology acceptance during the Covid-19 pandemic: International and interdisciplinary perspectives, Fellowship of Digital Society Initiative of the University of Zurich

2020-2022   

  

Covid-Norms: Monitoring and analyzing preventive behavior (with  T. N. Friemel, M. Eisenegger, & D. Vogler), Swiss National Science Foundation

2020-2021

 

Covid, Culture, and Communication (CoCuCo): Comparing public perceptions and adoption of contact tracing apps during the Covid-19 pandemic in Switzerland and Singapore (with S. S. Ho), ETH Zurich, Leading House for the bilateral science and technology cooperation programme with Asia

2020

 

Communicative strategies for promoting Covid-19 prevention behaviors (with T. N. Friemel), Federal Office of Public Health, Switzerland

2020

 

Informations- und Kommunikationsverhalten in der Corona-Krise (with T. N. Friemel), Federal Office of Communications, Switzerland

2015-2017

 

Der Einfluss gleichaltriger Bezugspersonen (Peers) auf das Mobilitäts- und Fahrverhalten junger Fahrerinnen und Fahrer (with E. Baumann & C. Klimmt), Federal Highway Research Institute, Germany

Awards

2022 Best Abstract Award by the Media Reception and Effects Division of the German Communication Association (DGPuK; with J. Scheper & S. Bruns)

2021   

Best Abstract Award by the Health Communication Division of the German Communication Association (DGPuK; with L. Tribelhorn, S. Hitchman, & T. N. Friemel)

2021

Best Abstract Award by the Media Reception and Effects Division of the DGPuK (with T. Frey & T. N. Friemel)

2018

Best Paper Award by the Health Communication Division of the International Communication Association (ICA; with E. Baumann, F. Czerwinski, & C. Klimmt)

2017

Best Abstract Award by the Media Reception and Effects Division of the DGPuK (with D. Hefner)

2015

Herbert von Halem Award of the DGPuK for the dissertation

2012

Paul F. Lazarsfeld-Fellowship of the Methods Division of the DGPuK for the master thesis

Publications

Books

Geber, S. (2017). Wie Meinungsführer Meinung kommunizieren. Meinungsführerschaft in der politischen Alltagskommunikation [The opinion giving of opinion leaders. Opinion leadership in everyday political conversations]. Köln: von Halem. 

Journal articles 

Vanherle, R., Geber, S., Geusens, F., & Beullens, K. (forthcoming). Drinking buddies: The importance of proximal norms in emerging adults' alcohol-related private and public social media use. Health Communication.

Geber, S., Tribelhorn, L., Hitchman, S. & Friemel, T. N. (forthcoming). Dynamic norms for dynamic times? An experiment on the effects of dynamic and static norms messages on Covid-19 vaccination intention. Studies in Communication and Media.

Winkelmann, L., & Geber, S. (2022). On the norm sensitivity of younger mobile phone users: Perceived social norms and phubbing in interactions between younger and older generations. Communication Research Reports, 39(4), 214–223. https://doi.org/10.1080/08824096.2022.2115476

Geber, S., & Ho, S. S. (2022). Examining the cultural dimension of tracing app adoption: A cross-country study in Singapore and Switzerland during the Covid-19 pandemic. Information, Communication & Society. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1080/1369118X.2022.2082880

Nguyen, H. M., Büchi, M., & Geber, S. (2022). Why and how do people disconnect in a digital society? Exploring people’s understanding of digital well-being and management of digital media use in everyday life. New Media & Society. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1177/14614448221105428

Geber, S., & Sedlander, E. (2022). Communication as the crucial link: Toward a multilevel approach to normative social influence. Studies in Communication Sciences. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.24434/j.scoms.2022.02.005

Geber, S., & Friemel, T. N. (2022). Tracing-technology adoption during the COVID-19 pandemic: The multifaceted role of social norms. International Journal of Communication, 16, 247-266. https://ijoc.org/index.php/ijoc/article/view/18089

Geber, S., Frey, T., & Friemel, T. N. (2021). Social aspects of health communication – Towards a research agenda. European Journal of Health Communication, 2(2), I-IV. https://doi.org/10.47368/ejhc.2021.200

Geber, S., Frey, T., & Friemel, T. N. (2021). Social media use in the context of drinking onset: The mutual influences of social media effects and selectivity. Journal of Health Communication, 26(8), 566-575. https://doi.org/10.1080/10810730.2021.1980636

Friemel, T. N., & Geber, S. (2021). Social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic in Switzerland: Health protective behavior in the context of communication and perceptions of efficacy, norms, and threat. Health Communication, 1-11. https://doi.org/10.1080/10410236.2021.1976360

Geber, S., & Friemel, T. (2021). A typology-based approach to tracing-app adoption during the COVID-19 pandemic: The case of the SwissCovid app. Journal of Quantitative Description: Digital Media, 1. https://doi.org/10.51685/jqd.2021.007

Geber, S., Baumann, E., Czerwinski, F., & Klimmt, C. (2021). The effects of social norms among peer groups on risk behavior: A multilevel approach to differentiate perceived and collective norms. Communication Research, 48, 319-345. https://doi.org/10.1177/0093650218824213

Friemel, T., Geber, S., Pfiffner, N., van Weert, J., de Bruijn, G. J., & Reifegerste, D. (2020). A European Journal of Health Communication in the age of open science. European Journal of Health Communication, 1, 1-6. https://doi.org/10.47368/ejhc.2020.001

Leuppert, R., & Geber, S. (2020). Commonly done but not socially accepted? Phubbing and social norms in dyadic and small group settings. Communication Research Reports, 37, 55-64. https://doi.org/10.1080/08824096.2020.1756767

Geber, S. (2020). Rezension zum Herausgeberband Handbuch der Gesundheitskommunikation: Kommunikationswissenschaftliche Perspektiven, von C. Rossmann & M. R. Hastall (Hrsg.). Publizistik, 65, 499-501. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11616-020-00587-3

Geber, S. (2019). Exploring normative leadership: An egocentric network approach to friends’ norm-signaling relevance. International Journal of Communication, 13, 4198-4218.

Geber, S., Baumann, E., & Klimmt, C. (2019). Where do norms come from? Peer communication as a factor in normative social influences on risk behavior. Communication Research, 46(5), 708-730. https://doi.org/10.1177/0093650217718656

Geber, S. (2019). Do self-perceived opinion leaders actually lead opinions? Evidence from an observational study on political conversations. Communication Research Reports, 3, 1-11. https://doi.org/10.1080/08824096.2019.1598856

Geber, S., & Hefner, D. (2019). Social norms as communicative phenomena: A communication perspective on the theory of normative social behavior. Studies in Communication and Media, 8, 6-28. https://doi.org/10.5771/2192-4007-2019-1-6

Rimal, R. N., Yilma, H., Ryskulova, N., & Geber, S. (2019). Driven to succeed: Improving adolescents' driving behaviors through a personal narrative-based psychosocial intervention in Serbia. Accident Analysis & Prevention, 122, 172-180. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aap.2018.09.034https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aap.2018.09.034

Geber, S., Baumann, E., & Klimmt, C. (2016). Tailoring in risk communication by linking risk profiles and communication preferences: The case of speeding of young car drivers. Accident Analysis & Prevention, 97, 315-325. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aap.2015.06.015

Geber, S., Scherer, H., & Hefner, D. (2016). Social capital in media societies: The impact of media use and media structures on social capital. International Communication Gazette, 78(6), 493–513. https://doi.org/10.1177/1748048516640211

Geber, S., & Scherer, H. (2015). My voter, my party, and me. American and German parliamentarians on Facebook. Journal of Information Technology & Politics, 12(4), 360-377. https://doi.org/10.1080/19331681.2015.1101037

Book chapters

Friemel, T., Geber, S., & Egli, S. (2020). Informations- und Kommunikationsverhalten in der Corona-Pandemie. In fög/Universität Zürich (Hrsg.), Jahrbuch Qualität der Medien – Schweiz Suisse Svizzera (S. 51-60). Zürich/Basel: Schwabe.

Geber, S., & Hefner, D. (2018). Eine Theorie sozial-normativer Mediennutzung. In C. Wilhelm, N. Podschuweit, M. Hofer & T. Koch & (Hrsg.), Medienwahl – Aktuelle Konzepte, Befunde und methodische Zugänge (S. 119-134). Baden-Baden: Nomos.

Scherer, H., & Geber, S. (2017). Standardization. In J. Matthes (Hrsg.), The Wiley Blackwell-ICA International Encyclopedias of Communication. The international encyclopedia of communication research methods. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons. 

Baumann, E., Geber, S., Klimmt, C., Maurer, M., Oschatz, C., & Sülflow, M. (2015). Grenzen der Wirksamkeit präventiver Botschaften am Beispiel von Verkehrssicherheitskampagnen. In M. Schäfer, O. Quiring, C. Rossmann, M. H. Hastall & E. Baumann (Hrsg.), Gesundheitskommunikation im gesellschaftlichen Wandel (Reihe Medien + Gesundheit). Baden-Baden: Nomos.

Baumann, E., & Geber, S. (2014). Targetingstrategien in der Verkehrssicherheitskommunikation zur Erreichbarkeit junger Risikogruppen. In C. Klimmt, M. Maurer, H. Holte & E. Baumann (Hrsg.), Verkehrssicherheitskommunikation: Beiträge der empirischen Forschung zur strategischen Unfallprävention (S. 287-307). Wiesbaden: Springer VS.

Research reports

Friemel, T., Geber, S., Poggiolini, C., & Scheuermeier, M. (2020). Kommunikative Einflussfaktoren auf Covid-19 Präventionsverhalten. Analyse zur Einführung der SwissCovid App und dem Maskenobligatorium im öffentlichen Verkehr. Forschungsbericht zuhanden des Bundesamts für Gesundheit. Zürich: Institut für angewandte Kommunikationsforschung.

Friemel, T., Geber, S., & Scheuermeier, M. (2020). Kommunikative Strategien für die Förderung von COVID-19-Präventionsverhalten. Adhoc-Auswertung zur SwissCovid App. Forschungsbericht zuhanden des Bundesamts für Gesundheit. Zürich: Institut für angewandte Kommunikationsforschung.

Friemel, T., Geber, S., & Egli, S. (2020). Informations- und Kommunikationsverhalten in der Corona-Krise. Befunde aus der Deutschschweiz zu Relevanz, Funktionen und Bewertung verschiedener Information- und Kommunikationsformen während der ersten Tage des Lockdowns. Bericht für das Bundesamt für Kommunikation. Zürich: Universität Zürich.

Klimmt, C., Maurer, M., Geber, S., Oschatz, C., & Sülflow, M. (2017). Evaluation der Kampagnenfortsetzung 2013/14 „Runter vom Gas!“. Berichte der Bundesanstalt für Straßenwesen, Mensch und Sicherheit, M 271. Bremen: Fachverlag NW.

Holte, H., Klimmt, C., Baumann, E., & Geber, S. (2014). Wirkungsvolle Risikokommunikation für junge Fahrer und Fahrerinnen. Berichte der Bundesanstalt für Straßenwesen, Mensch und Sicherheit, M 249. Bremen: Fachverlag NW.