Wenlin Liu - University of Houston
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Wenlin Liu

Assistant Professor
Communication Bldg

Wenlin Liu, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor of Strategic and Organizational Communication at the Jack J. Valenti School of Communication. Her research areas include interorganizational alliance, immigrant and multiethnic community building, and social network analysis. Dr. Liu was a leading member of the Alhambra Project, which takes a theory-driven approach to investigate the role of community-based storytelling and local nonprofit organizations in building a multiethnic community located in suburban Los Angeles. She has authored nine journal articles and book chapters covering topics including multiethnic community engagement, corporate-nonprofit partnership, and organizational alliance building using new technologies such as hyperlinks and social media. Dr. Liu's work has received several Top Paper Awards at conferences organized by International Communication Association (ICA), National Communication Association (NCA), and World Association of Public Opinion Research (WAPOR).

Prior to her appointment at Valenti, Dr. Liu taught at the University of Houston-Downtown (2016-2017). She also worked as a media analyst at the Consumer Media Division at Thomson Reuters, Beijing.


  • Ph.D. in Communication, University of Southern California, 2016
  • M.A. in Communication, University of Washington, Seattle, 2010
  • B.A. in Journalism, Peking University, with distinction, 2008



Selected Publications

  • Liu, W., Son, M., Wenzel, A., An, Z., Zhao, N. Nah, S., & Ball-Rokeach, S. J. (forthcoming). Bridging mechanism in multiethnic communities: Place-based communication, neighborhood belonging, and intergroup relations . Journal of International and Intercultural Communication.
  • Liu, W.,  Sidhu, A., Beacom, A. M., & Valente, T. W. (2017). Social network theory.  In P. Rössler.C. Hoffman, & L. van Zoonen (Eds.),   The International Encyclopedia of Media Effects.  San Francisco, CA: Wiley-Blackwell. doi: 10.1002/9781118783764.wbieme0092
  • Villanueva, G., Gonzalez, C., Son, M., Moreno, E.,   Liu, W.,  Ball-Rokeach, S. J. (in press): Bringing local voices into community revitalization: Engaged communication research in urban planning.   Journal of Applied Communication Research.
  • Chen, N.-T. N.,   Liu, W.,  Ognyanova, K., & Moreno, E. (in press). The Alhambra project: A prototype for using the communication infrastructure theory to construct and evaluate a community news website. In Y-C. Kim, M. Matsaganis, H. Wilkin, & J-Y. Jung (Eds.).   The Communication Ecology of 21st Century Urban Communities.  Peter Lang.
  • Yang, A., &   Liu, W.  (2017). Corporate environmental responsibility and global cross-sector hyperlink alliance network: A cross-national study.   Environmental Communication. doi: 10.1080/17524032.2016.1249900
  • Liu, W.  (2016). How Twitter connects to the information sources network over time in the Occupy Wall Street social movement.   Journal of Social Media Studies, 2(2),  111-121. doi: 10.15340/2147336622992
  • Wang, R.,   Liu, W.,  Gao. S. (2016). Hashtags and information virality in networked social movement: Examining hashtag co-occurrence patterns.   Online Information Review, 40(7),  850-866. doi: 10.1108/OIR-12-2015-0378
  • Liu, W.,  & Gastil, J. (2014). Pathways of immigrant political socialization: Examining the role of news media, organizational connections, and community interaction . Journal of Intercultural Communication Research, 43(3),  1-32. doi: 10.1080/17475759.2014.939214
  • Chen, N.-T. N., Ognyanova, K., Zhao, N.,   Liu, W.,  Gerson, D., Ball-Rokeach, S. J., & Park, M. (2013). Communication and socio-demographic forces shaping civic engagement patterns in a multiethnic city. In P. Moy (Ed .). Communication and Community (pp. 213-230).  New York: Hampton Press


  • 2016 ICA Communication and Division, Top Paper Award
  • 2014 NCA Business Communication Division, Top Paper Award
  • 2013 ICA Information System Division, Four Top Papers Award
  • 2013 Oxford Internet Institute, Participant
  • 2012 EDGE & FIRST Summer Research Fund, USC ($2000)
  • 2011 Annenberg Program of Online Communities Grant ($3,000)
  • 2010-2016 Annenberg Fellowship
  • 2010 WAPOR 63rd Annual Conference, Naomi Turner Top Paper Award
  • 2008-2009, Top Scholar Award, Graduate School, University of Washington