Dr. Kathrin Karsay
I am an Assistant Professor for Media and Health Communication at the Leuven School for Mass Communication Research at KU Leuven (Belgium).
I received my doctoral degree in 2018 at the University of Vienna. I was holding a pre-doctoral and post-doctoral research position at the Advertising and Media Effects Research Group of the Department of Communication at University of Vienna (Austria) until my maternity leave in 2019. From 2020 until 2021 I was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow, funded by the Research Foundation Flanders (FWO) at the School for Mass Communication at KU Leuven (Belgium).
My research interests focus on (social) media use and smartphone use. I study different aspects within the fields of health communication, media psychology (e.g., stereotypes, subjective wellbeing, sexualization), and body image research (e.g., self-objectification). I’m currently involved in research projects dealing with the consequences of digital media in children’s and adolescents’ well-being, digital disconnection, and mental health portrayals on social media.
I primarily apply a multi-disciplinary approach covering an extensive repertoire of quantitative social science research methods, including longitudinal surveys, experiments, eye-tracking, content analysis, and mobile experience sampling. I have authored and co-authored a combined total of 31 publications, the majority of them being published in leading international peer-reviewed journals such as Communication Research, Media Psychology, Mass Communication & Society, or Computers in Human Behavior.
In addition to my own research in this area, I am also currently editing a special section on “COVID-19, Digital Media Use, and Health” for the open-access journal International Journal of Communication. Furthermore, I edited a special section on “Agentic perspectives of Mobile Media (Non-)Use” in Mass Communication and Society, published in Vol 24, Issue 6, this year.
My work has led to several competitive research awards, including a Top 3 Student Paper Award at the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC) and the prestigious Dissertation Award from the Mass Communications division at the International Communication Association (ICA).
Click on research to learn more about my latest publications and projects.
Naderer, B., Peter, C., & Karsay, K. (2021) This picture does not portray reality: Developing and testing a disclaimer for digitally enhanced pictures on social media appropriate for tweens and teens. Journal of Children and Media. https://doi.org/10.1080/17482798.2021.1938619
Karsay, K., & Vandenbosch, L. (2021). Endlessly Connected: Moving Forward with Agentic Perspectives of Mobile Media (Non-)Use. Mass Communication and Society. 24(6), 779–794. https://doi.org/10.1080/15205436.2021.1974785
Karsay, K., Matthes, J., Schmuck, D. & Ecklebe, S. (accepted). Messaging, posting, and browsing: A mobile experience sampling study investigating youth’s social media use, affective well-being, and loneliness Social Science Computer Review.
Matthes, J., Karsay, K., Hirsch, M., Stevic, A., & Schmuck, D., (accepted). Reflective Smartphone Disengagement: Conceptualization, measurement, and validation. Computers in Human Behavior.