Anran Wang

Anran Wang

PhD Researcher

Department of Media and Communications

English, Mandarin
Key Expertise
Digital Inequalities, Media Ecology, Social Capital, Networks Analysis

About me

Research topic

What to expect from a digitalized remote village: the impacts of social networks on people’s digital engagement and social inequalities in a rainforest Yao community

Anran’s research incorporates ecological approaches into the media and communications discipline and the study of inequalities in rapidly digitizing societies. It applies social network analysis to the rural Chinese context which has been equivocally treated as a homogenous disadvantaged area in the existing digital inequalities literature. Thus, his proposed interdisciplinary research aims to expand not only theoretical approaches to the study of (digital) inequalities but also contribute to methodological innovation in the field. This allows his research to feed into evidence-based digital inclusion policies, thereby increasing the likelihood of disadvantaged populations benefiting from the use of information and communication technologies.

Supervisors: Professor Ellen Helsper 


Anran is a first-year PhD researcher in Media and Communications Studies at the London School of Economics and Political Science. His research explores the link between social and digital inequalities in rapidly digitalized remote villages from a networked inequality perspective.

Anran completed his BA in Public Relations at the Communication University of China in 2016 and obtained an MSc in Media and Communication (Research) at the LSE in 2018. After master graduation, Anran decided to spend three years to broaden his academic horizons. He turned out to work and played different roles in some exciting projects across fields in China, including rural development (with the China Agricultural University), behavioural public health (with Zhejiang University), and health communication (with Peking University). Apart from experience within social science disciplines, Anran also received training in Computer Science from the University of Pennsylvania.

When Anran served as an NGO program officer at the China Agricultural University during 2018-2019, he lived in a rainforest Yao village to coordinate a rural development program. In this year, Anran witnessed the rapid digitalization of the traditional village and significant changes in villagers’ living experience. These changes made Anran wonder how such changes might influence rural residents’ long-term wellbeing in a digital age. This research and life experience inspired Anran to apply for the PhD program to continue his study at a doctoral level.

Expertise Details

digital inequalities; media ecology; social capital; social networks analysis; health communication