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Lazarsfeld, Paul F. (1901–1976)

Paul F. Lazarsfeld was one of the most influential social scientists of the 20th century. He is credited with the founding of market research and communication research into media effects and the creation of the two-step flow model of mass communication. He significantly advanced qualitative and quantitative methodology for social sciences and invented the first instrument to measure audience reactions to media content in real time.

Shortly after earning a PhD degree in applied mathematics from the University of Vienna in 1925, Lazarsfeld founded the Research Center for Economic Psychology under the patronage of the university. This was the first research institute in the world to be affiliated with a university, and it became well known after conducting the first study of unemployment impact on community ...

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