Klaus Krippendorff

Klaus Krippendorff, Ph.D., Ph.D. h.c.

Klaus Krippendorff
  • Gregory Bateson Professor Emeritus of Communication

Sadly, Klaus Krippendorff passed away in early October at the age of 90. A full obituary is forthcoming. Our condolences to all who knew him and his work. Donations in his memory can be made to the Klaus Krippendorff Memorial Fund at Penn.

Klaus Krippendorff researches the role of language and dialogue in the social construction of reality.

Klaus Krippendorff’s research focuses on the role of language and dialogue in the social construction of reality: identities, institutions, cultural artifacts, power, Otherness, and meanings; emancipatory epistemology (hermeneutics) of human communication and the design of technology; content analysis, semantics, pragmatics of social interaction, and related research methods; conversation theory, information theory, and cyberspace; and second-order cybernetics of complex communication systems and their reflexive, self-organizing, and sympoietic properties.

The following are links to lists of Krippendorff’s publications, organized by subject area:

Click here to view software and information about Krippendorff’s Alpha Reliability.


  • Ingenieur (grad.), State Engineering School Hanover (Germany), 1954
  • Dipl. Design, Ulm School of Design (Germany), 1961
  • Ph.D., University of Illinois, Urbana, 1967

Selected Publications