Bio


Jennifer Pan is an Assistant Professor of Communication at Stanford University. Her research focuses on political communication and authoritarian politics. Pan uses experimental and computational methods with large-scale datasets on political activity in China and other authoritarian regimes to answer questions about how autocrats perpetuate their rule. How political censorship, propaganda, and information manipulation work in the digital age. How preferences and behaviors are shaped as a result.

Her book, Welfare for Autocrats: How Social Assistance in China Cares for its Rulers (Oxford, 2020) shows how China's pursuit of political order transformed the country’s main social assistance program, Dibao, for repressive purposes. Her work has appeared in peer reviewed publications such as the American Political Science Review, American Journal of Political Science, Comparative Political Studies, Journal of Politics, and Science.

She graduated from Princeton University, summa cum laude, and received her Ph.D. from Harvard University’s Department of Government.

Academic Appointments


  • Assistant Professor, Communication
  • Assistant Professor (By courtesy), Political Science
  • Assistant Professor (By courtesy), Sociology

Program Affiliations


  • Center for East Asian Studies

Professional Education


  • BA, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School (2004)
  • PhD, Harvard University, Government (2015)

2020-21 Courses


Stanford Advisees


All Publications