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Thuringian State Parliament and TU Ilmenau arrange teaching cooperation for political participation

State Parliament President Carius: Strengthening democracy before the state elections in 2019

Erfurt/Ilmenau – April 4, 2018. "The Thuringian State Parliament and the Technical University of Ilmenau have agreed on a teaching cooperation. Within one semester students will develop professional concepts for a communication campaign on behalf of the state parliament with the objective of strengthening democracy and political participation in the run-up to the Thuringian state elections in 2019", explained Christian Carius, President of the State Parliament, and Dr. Andreas Schwarz, seminar leader at the TU Ilmenau, in reference to the planned campaign today.

"We want to initiate a competition for the best communication concept with around 30 students from the Bachelor's programme in Applied Media and Communication Science at the TU Ilmenau. The aim is to motivate potential voters to make use of their voting rights and, thus, actively participate in political life. The campaign should have a broad and overall societal impact", the president of the state parliament continued. Dr. Andreas Schwarz, head of the Group for Research in Public Relations and Communication of Technology at the TU Ilmenau, added, “In this seminar our students will make a contribution to the region and test their communication skills in a real setting”.

Their tasks include the preparation of a situation analysis, a SWOT analysis (see background), the strategy formulation, a stakeholder identification, the action planning and an outlook to a later evaluation process. The participants experience how scientific methods and analytical techniques contribute to the professionalization of strategic and ethical communication in the political context. In addition, students gain basic knowledge about the connections between social media, communication campaigns and the political participation of citizens


The communication campaign will consist of an extensive package of measures in the areas of online communication, print products, advertisements, posters and trailers. At the end of the semester, a jury consisting of members of the state parliament as well as the TU Ilmenau will decide on the implementation of the best concepts.

A SWOT analysis (acronym for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) is a strategic planning tool. It serves to determine the position and develop strategies for companies and authorities (source: Wikipedia).


Dr. Andreas Schwarz
Phone: 03677-694703