Alvin Zhou's headshot

Alvin Zhou, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

UMN Hubbard

Computational ∪ Strategic

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I am an Assistant Professor at the Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities.


Two keywords, computational social science and strategic communication (advertising, public relations, and organizations), characterize my research. Most of my work examines their intersection or falls under either of the two subfields:

  • Computational ∩ Strategic: I study public relations, advertising, and organizational communication with computational methods.

  • Computational \ Strategic: I develop, validate, and employ computational tools to examine platform design and audience analytics.

  • Strategic \ Computational: I explore digital technologies’ implications for the practice of strategic communication.


My work is forthcoming or has appeared in journals across communication subfields, such as Social Media + Society, Journal of Communication, Computers in Human Behavior, Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, Mass Communication and Society, Public Relations Review, and Journal of Public Relations Research. My research has received eight top paper awards from ICA, NCA, AEJMC, and PRSA, including the 2020 ICA Robert Heath Award and the 2020 NCA PRIDE Article of the Year Award. Feel free to check out my CV, message me on Twitter, or book me on Google Calendar, all linked on this homepage.


I received my Ph.D. in Communication from UPenn Annenberg. Prior to that, I obtained an MA in Statistics and Data Science from the Wharton School and an MA in Strategic Public Relations from USC Annenberg. I graduated from Tsinghua University with dual degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Journalism.