Thriving Families in the Digital Age: Advancing our Understanding of the Relationship Between Family Well-Being, Family Values, and Self-Directed Experimentation with Digital Media and Technology
The thesis purpose is to advance the knowledge of families, in particular family processes related to well-being and the digital. The interdisciplinary research draws on perspectives from the studies of philosophy, media, technology, culture, and psychology to develop a holistic, up-to-date and testable theoretical and conceptual framework of family processes. Based on the up-to-date synthesis of interdisciplinary theoretical and empirical research, the proposed framework should provide a more theoretically nuanced and practically useful alternative to contemporary frameworks related to the processes involved family well-being, parental well-being, and child well-being. From the methodology perspective, the promise of the theoretical framework is tested in multiple comprehensive intervention-based experiments. Ultimately, the contribution of doctoral research is to deepen our theoretical understanding of processes involved in facilitating the thriving of families in the digital age and provide interested practitioners with an evidence-based action-informing framework that translates the theoretical understanding in principles and recommendations of practical value.
Supervisors: Professor Ellen Helsper and Professor Sonia Livingstone
Paul's academic training is in management, economics, communication, and media. Before starting the PhD, Paul obtained a BA in Corporate Management and Economics in his native country Germany from the Zeppelin University. Afterwards, he completed a MA in Communication Studies (summa cum laude) with a focus on New Media and Internet at the Catholic University of Portugal. His studies are supported by Germany's most prestigious and selective scholarship foundation, the German Academic Scholarship Foundation.
His professional expertise is grounded in his work as a consultant, coach, analyst, and evaluator. As a change management consultant, Paul was providing various services to major DAX30 companies (such as BMW), including organizing, designing, and conducting smaller-scale workshops and large-scale events around topics like corporate culture and leadership as well as collecting and analysing various types of data and synthesizing key findings, such as from in-depth interviews of multiple stakeholders. Later, Paul worked as a data analyst and project evaluator in a consultancy for major international non-profit organisations (such as Save The Children), contributing to the design and improvement of qualitative and quantitative data collection tools, the analysis of large qualitative and quantitative data sets, and the synthesis of key data-based findings and lessons into concise action-informing reports. As a certified positive psychology coach, Paul is currently facilitating his clients' self-determined goals for positive change in their lives, work, relationships, and well-being.