Shan Huang is an assistant professor at the Foster School of Business at the University of Washington, Seattle. Her research focuses on social networks and digital strategy. The increased availability of big-networked experiments and data allows researchers to analyze social behavior at a population scale. Her work aims to rethink the role of social networks in economics and organizations, leveraging the phenomena, data, and research tools enabled by new technologies.
Shan’s current work examines social advertising effectiveness, information (e.g., emotional content, weak ties) diffusion in massive social networks, and behavioral mechanisms and externalities of social referrals. She is especially fascinated with understanding how these behaviors and phenomena vary across individuals, social ties, products, and markets, using large-scale field tests. For example, integrating the experimental evidence with the data of individuals, products, ads and network structures, her studies address the incentives, magnitude, contagion patterns, and viral factors (i.e., characteristics of products, brands, ad images, behaviors, and individuals) of social influence in social advertising and product adoptions. Shan uses a variety of research methodologies (e.g., large-scale randomized field experiments, network analysis, applied machine learning, and econometrics) in her work. She received a bachelor's degree from Tsinghua University, a Master’s degree from the University of British Columbia, and a Ph.D. degree from MIT Sloan School of Management.