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Kristin Hansen M.A., graduate of the Communication Management Master's programme at the University of Leipzig, was awarded this year's Talent Award 2020 by the Bundesverband der Kommunikatoren (BdKom) on 17 September 2020. The award ceremony took place at Kommunikationskongress 2020, the industry's annual flagship event in Berlin. Kristin Hansen prevailed in a strong field of applicants with her Master's thesis on the ethical aspects of Artifical Intelligence in communication management. The other nominees in the final round came from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München and Pforzheim University.

The prize is endowed with 2,000 euros; in addition, the study will be published as a book in the BdKom publication series.

The Master's thesis "Künstliche Intelligenz in der strategischen Kommunikation: Eine qualitative Untersuchung ethischer Herausforderungen und normativer Erwartungen zur Gestaltung eines ethisch verantwortungsvollen Einsatzes von KI in der Kommunikationsbranche" was supervised by Professor Cornelia Wolf. The author addressed the question of how the use of artificial intelligence in communication can be designed in an ethically responsible way and what contribution the communication industry can make to this. The aim of the research was to discuss ethical challenges and framework conditions of AI as well as expectations for an ethically responsible use of AI in communication. In addition, possible normative consequences and recommendations for action were examined.

A multi-method design was used to answer the research questions: With the help of a systematic literature analysis, the challenges of AI discussed in the literature were first identified. In a second step, guided expert interviews were conducted with 24 experts from interdisciplinary fields in order to shed more light on the challenges, discuss ethical framework conditions and determine expectations for the use of AI. The findings show that the use of AI also poses ethically critical challenges for the communications industry. Differentiated industry-specific self-regulation can contribute to an ethical institutional design of AI-supported communication; experts see communication managers in particular as having a duty to recognise the responsibility of the organisation and the individual. Based on the recommendations and expectations of experts, the study systematically identifies design options to ensure responsible action in daily dealings with AI.