ESR10 Laura Dellagiacoma

Institute for Democracy and Civil Society
Supervised by Prof. T. Rothmund, Prof. W. Frindte, Dr. D. Geschke
I explore online hate speech: contents, networks and effects on hate crime.

Project Synopsis

Project title: Online hate speech: contents, networks and effects on hate crime.

While the interest of researchers and policy-makers towards online hate speech is growing, its impact on the offline world is still to be assessed. In fact, most research has been focusing either on online hate speech or on hate crime, letting the questions on their potential links unanswered. Few articles have so far investigated both phenomena and they reached different conclusions (see Williams et al., 2020; Wiedlitzka et al, 2021). A systematic literature will be conducted to shed light on how online hate speech and hate crime are related and under which socio-economic and political circumstances the relation becomes stronger. The review will provide an overview of scientific evidence and of most frequent methods and theories, identifying consolidated knowledge and gaps. Drawing on the results, a theoretical model will be developed to conceptualize the influential mechanisms between online hate speech and hate crime. A comprehensive approach will be adopted to proceed from the micro to the macro level without simplifying the structural and cultural processes of racism and social inequality. Lastly, the model will be tested in an empirical study with data from social media, police records and civil society organizations. Results will not only contribute to the academic literature, but also inform policy-makers on how to act against the spreading of hate both in the online and offline worlds.


  • ESR 10 (Laura Dellagiacoma) Paper in Progress: Ideological attitudes predicting online hate speech
  • ESR 10 (Laura Dellagiacoma) Book Chapter in Progress: Ideological attitudes and motivational goals behind online hate speech
  • ESR 10 (Laura Dellagiacoma) Paper in Progress: The empirical links between online hate speech and hate crime: a systematic literature review
  • ESR 10 (Laura Dellagiacoma) presented at the international Workshop “Hate Speech – an Interdisciplinary Approach”, organized by the Minerva Center for the Rule of Law under Extreme Conditions at the University of Haifa in collaboration with Freie Universitat Berlin and Technischen Universitat Berlin (online, 17-19/01/2022)


Laura Dellagiacoma is a PhD candidate at Friedrich-Schiller-University of Jena (Germany) and is working within the Institute for Democracy and Civil Society (IDCS)/Amedeu Antonio Stiftung (ASS). She graduated in Community Psychology at the University of Padua (Italy), with a master thesis based on the research project “DigiIN – Towards socially inclusive digital society” of the University of Helsinki. Before joining NETHATE, Laura worked as a trainee at the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA), providing support in the EU Immigrants and Descendants Survey Project and in the team for technical assistance and capacity building (TACB) on Hate Crimes.