Anfan CHEN Anfan CHEN
Anfan CHEN 陳安繁

Research Assistant Professor

PhD, Tsinghua University
(852) 3411-8127
CVA Room 929B
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CHEN Anfan (Ph.D., Tsinghua U) is an Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication Studies, School of Communication, Hong Kong Baptist University. Before joined HKBU, I have worked as research associate professor and Postdoc in several acdemic affiliations in Mainland China and Hong Kong.

My research lies at the intersection of computational communication, science communication, and political communication. More specifically, I have investigated how information and media technology influence the online public engagement among different social actors, including media, government, public, and scientist, and how the interactions among them affects the agenda of public issues. Specifically, I focus on how information and media technologies affect people’s communicative behavior and communication practices. I am also interested in how information and media technologies are applied to different domains, including political communication, science communication, health communication, and crisis communication.


Research Interests

Computational Social Science Medthods (Data Scraping, Natural Language Processing, Machine Learning, Network Analysis, Statistic Casual Inference),

Public Engagement of Science Communication

Civil Science Communication on Controversial S&T (i.e. GMO, gene editing)

Public Outreach of Scientists

Identity Driven Communication

Civil Crisis Communication



Research Articles in English

Luo, C., Dai, R., Deng, Y., & Chen, A. (2023). How did Chinese public health authorities promote COVID-19 vaccination on social media? A content analysis of the vaccination promotion posts. Digital Health, 9, 20552076231187474.

Zhang, X., Chen, A*., Jin, J. Scientists’ Mediated Participation in Public Outreach: Multiple Direct and Personal Norm Mediated Predictors. Public Understanding of Science, Accepted.(Corresponding Author)

Chen, A., Zhang, X., Jin, J. (2022). The Sagan Effect and Scientists’ Public Outreach Participation in China: Multilayered Roles of Social Norms and Rewards. Science Communication, 10755470221143077.

Chen, A., Cho, H., Evans, R., & Zeng, R*. (2023). Reimagining communication in a post-pandemic world: The intersection of information, media technology, and psychology. Frontiers in Psychology, 14, 1154044.

Luo, C#., Zhu, Y#., Chen, A#. (2023). What motivates people to counter misinformation on social media? Unpacking the roles of perceived consequences, third-person perception, and social media use. Online Information Review. Accepted. (Equal Contribution)

Chen, A., Chen, K., Shen, C., Zhang, J., Meng, J. (2022). When National Identity Meets Conspiracies: The Reinforcement Loop of Identity Language on Public Participation and Discourse of COVID-19 Conspiracies on Weibo. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 22 (5), e19421.

Chen, A., Lu, Y., Chen, K., Aaron, Y.  (2023). Pandemic Nationalism: How Exposure to Government Social Media Affects People’s Belief in COVID-19 Conspiracy Theories in China. International Journal of Press/Politics, Accepted.

Chen, A., Zhang, J., Luo, C., Liao, W., Shen, C., Feng, B. (2022). Multiplicity and Dynamics of Social Representations of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Chinese Social Media in 2020. Information Processing & Management, 102990.

Chen, A., Ng, A., Xi, Y., & Hu, Y. (2022). What makes an online help-seeking message go far during the COVID-19 crisis in mainland China? A multilevel regression analysis. Digital Health, 8, 20552076221085061.

Chen, A., Zhang, X. (2021). Rethinking Scientific Knowledge and Incorporating Belief in Evolution: Examining Antecedents of Public Acceptability of Human Gene Editing. Health, Risk and Society, , 24(7-8), 297-316.

Chen, A. & Zhang, X. (2022). Changing Social Representation and Agenda Interactions of Gene Editing After Crisis: A Network Agenda-setting Study on Chinese Social Media. Social Science Computer Review0894439321988066.

Zhang, X., Chen, A*. (2022). The multiplicity and dynamics of functional crisis memories in crisis communication: How Chinese social media users collectively reconstructed SARS during COVID-19. Journal of Public Relations Research, , 34(1-2), 45-63. (Corresponding Author).

Chen, K., Chen, A*., Shen, C., Zhang, J., Meng, J. (2020). Conspiracy and counteractive narratives about COVID-19 origination on Chinese social media: how it started and who to blame. Harvard Misinformation Review, 1(8), 1-30. (Co-First Author).

Li, P., Cho, H., Qin, Y., & Chen, A*. (2020). #MeToo as a Connective Movement: Examining the Frames Adopted in the Anti-Sexual Harassment Movement in China. Social Science Computer Review, 0894439320956790. (Corresponding Author).

Luo, C., Li, Y., Chen, A*., & Tang, Y. (2020). What triggers online help-seeking retransmission during the COVID-19 period? Empirical evidence from Chinese social media. Plos one, 15(11), e0241465. (Corresponding Author)

Shen, C., Chen, A*., Luo, C., Zhang, J., Feng, B., & Liao, W. (2020). Using Reports of Symptoms and Diagnoses on Social Media to Predict COVID-19 Case Counts in Mainland China: Observational Infoveillance Study. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 22(5), e19421. (Co-First Author).

Kong, D., Chen, A*., Zhang, J. (2022). Public Discourse and Sentiment of Dementia on Chinese Social Media: A Machine Learning of Weibo Data from 2010 to 2021. Journal of Internet Medical Research. Under Review.(Corresponding Author)

Chen, Z., Oh, P., & Chen, A. (2021). The Role of Online Media in Mobilizing Large-Scale Collective Action. Social Media+ Society, 7(3), 20563051211033808.

Xi, Yipeng; CHEN, Anfan; NG, Aaron. Conditional transparency: Differentiated news framings of COVID-19 severity in the pre-crisis stage in China. Plos one, 2021, 16.5: e0252062.

Luo, C., Su, Y., Chen, A. (2022). Excavating social representations and perceived barriers of organ donation in China over the past decade: Mixed text analytic approach. Social Science & Medicine, 10.

Zhang, X., Nekmat, E., & Chen, A. (2020). Crisis collective memory making on social media: A case study of three Chinese crises on Weibo. Public Relations Review, 46(4), 101960.

Luo, C., Chen, A., Cui, B., & Liao, W. (2021). Exploring public perceptions of the COVID-19 vaccine online from a cultural perspective: Semantic network analysis of two social media platforms in the United States and China. Telematics and Informatics, 65, 101712.

Hu, Y., Huang, H., Chen, A*., & Mao, X. L. (2020, October). A Cross-Modal Classification Dataset on Social Network. In CCF International Conference on Natural Language Processing and Chinese Computing (pp. 697-709). Springer, Cham. (Corresponding Author).

Hu, Y., Huang, H., Chen, A., Mao, X. L. (2020). Weibo-COV: A Large-Scale COVID-19 Tweets Dataset from Weibo. The 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP), EI. Available at:

Leng, Y., Zhai, Y., Sun, S., Wu, Y., Selzer, J., Strover, S.,Chen, A & Ding, Y. (2021). Misinformation during the COVID-19 outbreak in China: Cultural, social and political entanglements. IEEE Transactions on Big Data, 7(1), 69-80.

Chen, A., Jin, J., Luo, C. (2019). Reward and punishment: the dual structure of network user identity and emotional expression in social media. Press Circles, 5, 18 – 44. (In Chinese).

Xi, Y., Chen, A., & Zhang, W. (2021). The Expression of Cultural Identities in Hong Kong’s Anti-Extradition Law Amendment Bill Movement: A Semantic Network Analysis of Tweets. Social Science Computer Review, 08944393211012267.

Zhang, W., Xi, Y., & Chen, A. (2020). Why do replies appear? A multi-level event history analysis of online policy discussions. New Media & Society, 22(8), 1484-1504.

Chen, Z., Su, C. C., & Chen, A. (2019). Top-down or Bottom-up? A Network Agenda-setting Study of Chinese Nationalism on Social Media. Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media, 63(3), 512-533.

Chen, A., Zhang, H., Fang, A. (2015). Political Efficacy, Media Use, and Ways of Conflicting Interests——A Study Based on the 2010 China General Social Survey (CGSS). Press Circles, 22, 37 – 45. (In Chinese).

Zhang, X., Chen, A., Zhang, W. (2021). Before and After the Chinese Gene-Edited Human Babies: Multiple Discourses of Gene Editing on Social Media, Public Understanding of Science, 6(1), 1-18.

Li, Y., Chen, L. & Chen, A. (2019). Evolution of Chinese online GMO discussions over the past decade: Characteristics, changes, and causes. Culture of Science, 2(4), 311-325.

Chen, A., Zhang, X., Li, S., Yang, N., Zhu, W. (2021). Issue Communication, Discourse Structure, and Media: The Evolution of Social Representation of the “Gene Editing” Issue on Weibo in a Scientific Crisis. Chinese Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 18, 157-183. (In Chinese)

Jin, J., Meng, F., Chen, A. (2018). Mapping the Evolutive Trajectories of China’s Digital Divide: A Longitudinal Observation. Digital Inclusion: An International Comparative Analysis, Lexington Books.

Liang, H., Wei, R., & Chen, A. (2023). The Emergence of COVID-19 Misinformation: Conception and Message Characteristics. Miscommunicating the COVID-19 Pandemic: An Asia Perspective, 18.

Chen, K., Shen, C., Zhang, J., Chen, A., Meng, J. (2020). COVID-19 misinformation on Chinese social media – lessons for countering conspiracy theories. COVERSATION, 3(1), 1-6.

Research Articles in Chinese

Chen, A., Zhang, X. (2021). Issue Communication, Discourse Structure and Media: The Social Representation Evolution of “Gene Editing” in the Scientific Crisis on Weibo. Chinese Journal of Communication, 2021. ( CSSCI journal)

Xing, M., Chen, A., Huang, H. (2022). Discourse and Media: The Reproduction of SARS Collective Memory on Chinese Social Media During COVID-19. Modern Communication, 2022. (CSSCI journal)

Chen, A., Jin, J., Luo, C. (2019). Reward and Punishment: The Dual Structure of Online User Identity and Emotional Expression on Social Media. Journalistic Monthly, 2019. (CSSCI journal)

Jin, J., Chen, A. (2017). The Heat of Online Events and Topics: Operationalized Measurements Based on Communication Effects. Modern Communication (CSSCI journal)

Chen, A., Zhang, H., Fang, A. (2015). Political Efficacy, Media Use and Interest Expression Modes: Based on 2010 Chinese General Social Survey (CGSS). Journalistic Monthly, 2015. (CSSCI journal)

Chen, A. (2015). The Communication of Food Rumors on Online Media: Taking “Injected Watermelons” and Its Mutated Information as Examples. New Media and Society (4). (CSSCI journal)

Chen, A., et al. (2020). Digital Gaza or Digital Berlin Wall? The Online Agenda Competition in the Controversy of GMOs on Social Media, Future Communication, 2020. (CSSCI  journal)

Chen, A., Mao, X. (2018). The “Sensualism” Phenomenon in Taiwan’s TV News: A Case Study of CtiTV Evening News. Global Media Journal, 2018. (CSCCI journal)

Chen Anfan. (2015). An Empirical Study on the Occurrence Mechanism of Online Dirty Words: Based on Bandura’s Social Cognitive Theory. Southeast Communication, 8, 73-78.

Chen Anfan. (2019). Topic Communication in Online Comments: Social Governance Based on Public Sentiments. Blue Book on Internet. Social Sciences Academic Press, Beijing.

Feng Haiyan & Chen Anfan. (2018). Influencing Factors of Mainstream Media’s Cross-cultural Adaptation: A Case Study of People’s Daily Facebook Account. Young Journalist (6), 38-39.

Chen Anfan & Jin Jianbin. (2017). “Internet Celebrity” and the Symphony of China’s Internet Evolution in 20 Years. Educational Media Research (1), 33-37.

Niu Guiqin, Jin Jianbin, Chen Anfan. (2018). Research on New Media Science Popularization Capacity in Beijing. National Science Popularization Capacity Development Report, Social Sciences Academic Press.

Chen Anfan, Cao Bolin. (2023). 2022 Big Data Analysis Report on Online Civility of Shenzhen Citizens. Shenzhen Blue Book on Online Civility. Social Sciences Academic Press.




2021-2024, National Youth Social Science Fund (21CXW018), Research on the Dissemination Mechanism and Governance of Misinformation in Emergent Public Health Events Based on Integrated Big Data, PI (Principal Investigator)

2021-2024, Supporting Project of National Youth Social Science Fund, Research on Misinformation Governance of Emergent Public Health Events on Chinese Social Media, PI

Shandong Social Science Fund, Research on Strengthening the Application and Management of Self-Media in the Era of  zimeiti (23CWTJ02), Co-PI (PI: Professor Feng Qiang, Shandong University School of Journalism and Communication)

Central University Basic Research Fund (Jinan Far-voyage Plan), Research on AI Decision-Making Mechanisms in Network Collaborative Governance, Co-PI (PI: Professor Liu Qian, School of Journalism and Communication, Jinan University)

2021-2024, National Key Social Science Fund, The Transformation of News Communication Landscape and Research Paradigms in 5G Era, Participant (PI: Professor Jin Jianbin, Tsinghua University School of Journalism and Communication)

2022-2023, Shanghai 2022 Science and Technology Innovation Action Plan, Research on Technological Communication Innovations for the Elderly from the Technology Enablement Perspective, Co-PI (PI: Associate Professor Zhang Lianshan, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Journalism and Communication)

2021-2022, Invisible spammers: detecting bots on Chinese social media, International Computational Social Science Society, Co-PI

2020, USTCS New Liberal Arts (YD2110002015), The Third Culture: Knowledge Production on Short Video Social Media, PI

2020, USTC School of Humanities and Social Sciences Research Incubation Fund (DA2110251001), PI

2020, Shanghai Young Social Science Fund (2020EXW005), Participant

2020, National Young Social Science Fund (20CXW678), Participant

2022, Shenzhen Cyberspace Administration Online Civility Survey, Participant



2022, NCA top faculty paper

2018, ICA best student paper

2019, Best Paper Award, Tsinghua Journalism and Communication Doctoral Student Forum

2018, Best Paper Award, Chinese Conference on New Media

2015, Best Paper Award, Wuhan University Doctoral Student Forum

2017, First Prize and Second Prize Outstanding Paper Award,


Media interviews

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