Prof. Wolfgang Hagen

Sin­ce 2013 Wolfgang Hagen is full pro­fes­sor of Me­dia Studies at the Leu­pha­na Uni­ver­si­ty Lüne­burg.

Wolfgang Hagen studied German literature and philosophy in Vienna and Berlin. PhD 1977. From 1970 to 1972 he worked in the Merve-Verlag Berlin. 1978 cultural editor at Radio Bremen, 1979-1984 editor and host of "SFBeat" of the Sender Freies Berlin. From 1984 to 2002 he worked as Head of Dept. "Culture News", as TV-host of "Drei Nach Neun", then as a start-up and program director of "Radio Bremen Vier", the first "youth program" of the ARD. From 2002 to 2012, he was head of the culture and music departments in Deutschlandradio Kultur and head of media research of Deutschlandfunk. 2001 Habilitation at the University of Basel, from 2003 on Associate Professor of Media Studies at the Humboldt University Berlin, since April 2012 Professor of Rhetoric, since April 2013 Professor of Media Studies at the Leuphana University of Lüneburg. In spring 2015 Max Kade Visiting Professor at UCSB (Santa Barbara, California). Research interests are: The history and theory of the radio and the computer. Recent publications: "Das Radiobuch. Zur Theorie und Geschichte des Hörfunks Deutschland/USA", 2005 (Wilhelm Fink); “Ethos Pathos Powerpoint – Zur Epistemologie und (Silicon Valley)-Rhetorik digitaler Präsentationen", 2015 (Campus).



Simulation and Game

My researches are questioning the epistemological status of computer-based simulations: In classical sense, do simulations equal experiments as theoretically predicted results? Or rather, due to their algorithmic structure, are they changing fundamentally the semantic and syntactic status of scientific theories as i.e. Paul Humphreys has argued? Or, as theoretically modeled and algorithmically programmed operations, are they especially delivering those insights which, in case of success, simply confirm the theory models applied as their condition? Epistemologically seen in the sense of Wittgenstein’s remark on notions, do simulations receive their meaning only through their use?

Insofar, my research interests seek to combine the basic considerations of Hermann Weyl (including the theses of Ludwig Wittgenstein based on them) about the concept of game in language and mathematics with some current approaches to the epistemological definition of computer simulations, as they have been discussed i.e. by Eric Winsberg, Michael Weisberg or Johannes Lenhard. In the perspective of their epistemological status, my question is how "fictional components" (Winsberg) and "imaginary cracks" (Purves) are operating in models of computer simulations where, in many cases, paradoxically mostly these elements are responsible for their success, resilience and sustainability.