DoCMA, the virtual institute, has meanwhile produced several doctoral theses, publishes various articles and enables students to write their theses. A DoCMA team led by the two professors Carsten Jentsch and Henrik Müller currently works with the economic research institutes RWI (Essen) and IW (Cologne) on behalf of the Federal Ministry of Economics to develop new, media-based economic indicators. This could make forecasts more accurate and faster. The team thinks of many new research questions, such as the comparative real-time analysis of media coverage in various European countries. With text mining, one could find out at any time which topics the individual nations currently deal with.
In the climate debate, for example, Poland has different interests than Germany. Where's the common denominator? Is there one at all? "Our European democracy lacks common public", says Müller, "instead we have different publics who hardly notice each other. And even with common challenges like the euro or the refugee crisis, we have different discourses. Our tools are made for comparing discourse spaces, so we could gain a better understanding between the countries and standardize the space of the arguments", he says. In the end, not only journalism, statistics and all other subjects that work with text data could benefit - but Europe as a whole.