Regions in the news

Von Bloh,  J., Oezgun, B., Broekel, T., Sternberg, T. (2019), New(s) data for Entrepreneurship Research? An innovative approach to use Big Data on media coverage. Small Business Economics (in press)


Although conventional register and survey data on entrepreneurship have enabled remarkable insights into the phenomenon, the added value has slowed down noticeably over the last decade. There is a need for fresh approaches utilising modern data sources such as Big Data. Until now, it has been quite unknown whether Big Data actually embodies valuable contributions for entrepreneurship research and where it can perform better or worse than conventional approaches. To contribute towards the exploration of Big Data in entrepreneurship research, we use a newly developed dataset based on publications of the German Press Agency (dpa) to explore the relationship between news coverage of entrepreneurship and regional entrepreneurial activity. Furthermore, we apply sentiment analysis to investigate the impact on sentiment of entrepreneurial press releases. Our results show mixed outcomes regarding the relationship between reporting of entrepreneurial events, i.e., media coverage, and entrepreneurial activity in German planning regions. At this stage, our empirical results reject the idea of a strong relationship between actual entrepreneurial activities in regions and the intensity of it being reported. However, the results also imply much potential of Big Data approaches for further research with more sophisticated methodology approaches. Our paper provides an entry point into Big Data usage in entrepreneurship research and we suggest a number of relevant research opportunities based on our results.

Oezgun, B., & Broekel, T. (2019), Regions in press releases: Does the Where determines the What?. unpublished


There is a systematic variation in the frequency and content of news coverage between regions and what makes a region newsworthy in a European context is yet to be explored from a sub-national perspective. This paper seeks to fill this gap by exploiting a novel and unique database of press releases by the largest German news agency. We geo-locate more than 100,000 press releases and relate their frequency and content to characteristics of regions they refer to. We find population size, economic prosperity and existence of editorial desks in regions being main determinants of coverage. Moreover, substantial thematic variations are observed between regions, which are partly explained by regional differences in economic, social, technological, and geographical structures. The paper thereby shows how the “where” shapes “what” information about regions enters the journalistic process and the extent to which this contributes to the picture of how regions are represented in news.