© Maria Sommer

I am sociologist who researches the complex network of knowledge, space, memory and communication. Since November 2023, she has been the junior research group leader of the Emmy Noether Group „The Socio-Spatial Memory of European Borders: Dispositives of Remembering and Forgetting “ in the research area „Economy and Civil Society“ at the IRS. She is also an associated member of the Collaborative Research Center 1265 „Re-Figuration of Spaces“ at Technische Universität Berlin. 

I studied sociology, philosophy, journalism and communication studies at the Freie Universität Berlin (2002-2008). She completed her doctorate at TU Chemnitz with a dissertation on „Memory practices in online discourses“ (2016). In addition, together with Andreas Bischof (TU Chemnitz), she led the BMBF teaching-learning research project „Media and Shelter“ (2015-2016). She was a post-doctoral researcher in research projects at the IRS („Socio-spatial Transformations in German-Polish ‚Interstices'“ 2018-2020), the TU Berlin („Knowledge in project- and process-oriented planning“ 2020-2023), as well as at the University of Hamburg and the European University of Flensburg („ACCESS – Institutional Barriers And Inequality In Higher Education“ 2022-2023).

 An important part of her research is the development and adaptation of qualitative approaches for research on relational space. She focuses on theory-generating methods, discourse-analytical approaches, visual and multimodal methods and mapping approaches.

I have developed and taught courses on bachelor-, master- and PhD-level in qualitative methods, sociology, media and cultural theory and digital communication.