Dr Ranjana Das

Senior Lecturer in Media and Communication

Qualifications: PhD, MSc, MA, BSc, FHEA

Phone: Work: 01483 68 3766
Room no: 38 AD 03

Office hours

In semester 1, the best times to find me are Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. My door is always open if I am in my office so just pop in if you wish to see me. If I am teaching elsewhere on campus, or at meetings, and you've popped by and not found me, just drop me an e-mail and I will arrange to see you. 

Further information


Ranjana Das holds a PhD in media and communications from the Department of Media and Communication at the London School of Economics (2008-2011) where she was supervised by Professor Sonia Livingstone. Ranjana was Post-doctoral Fellow at Leuphana, University of Luneburg (2011-2012), Lecturer at the School of Media, Communication and Sociology at the University of Leicester (2012-2017), and then Senior Lecturer at the University of Surrey (2017--). Ranjana has directed a 14 country research consortium on the future of audiences in the context of emerging technologies (funded by the AHRC, 2015-2018), and has been Chair of the Audience and Reception Studies division of the ECREA (2014-2017). Her research is funded by the AHRC, British Academy and the Wellcome Trust.

Research Interests

Core Area 1: Everyday experiences of communication technologies

I am interested in empirical explorations of people's everyday engagement with evolving communication technologies. I am developing a particular focus on everyday experiences of, and emerging literacies with algorithmic interfaces and connected devices. This work is located within my ongoing interest in users and audiences in my past projects, spanning a variety of media genres. My most recent work here includes directing CEDAR - a 29 member team which conducted a foresight analysis exercise on the future of audiences’ engagement with media technologies in the context of the IOT and datafication in 2030. This work was funded by the AHRC, UK, and has led to a range of publications as below, including a forthcoming book with Palgrave Macmillan (jointly with Brita Ytre-Arne). This also includes my new project on experiences of datafication in everyday life- looking at issues emerging out of CEDAR's foresight analysis, taking a phenomenological approach to everyday experiences of datafication and dataism, paying particular attention to critical data and algorithm literacies. In the past, my work has included young people’s digital literacies on social media, people’s reception of television and film genres, public reactions to ‘offensive’ television content (my new book Provocative Screens with Anne Graefer, Palgrave), people’s regulatory expectations, conceptual developments in communication research in the transformation of audiences to users etc.


Core Area 2: Maternal well-being and digital technologies

I approach my second research area as an interdisciplinary and policy-relevant space where I explore the possibilities and limits of digital technologies in maternal well-being and mental health, in the context of unevenness in offline support for mothers in the first 1000 days. In this space, I converge my interests in media and evolving technologies, maternal health, family relationships, e-health and parent/patient discussion platforms, public engagement with families and healthcare policy. Some highlights here include my newly funded Wellcome Trust project (2018-2019) on the health communication practice of South Asian migrant mothers with postnatal mental health difficulties. This strands  also includes my just concluded British Academy project (2016-2018) investigating  digital technologies and women's peri-natal experiences in the UK - looking at apps, forums, social networking sites, vlogging sites and other areas. This work is becoming a research monograph with Routledge titled The internet and maternal wellbeing (2018) and related journal articles.



• Principal Investigator: Wellcome Trust Grant South Asian migrant mothers, postnatal mental health and communication technologies 2018-2020
• Principal Investigator: Arts and Humanities Research Council grant for the CEDAR network 2015-2018
• Principal Investigator: British Academy and Leverhulme Trust Small grant  2016-2018

Research Collaborations

Since 2015, I have been directing a research consortium funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. Called CEDAR - this consortium has been mapping transformations, trends and future scenarios for audiences and users, as digital media rapidly transform and as connected and emerging technologies develop. You can find out more about CEDAR here - www.cedarahrc.com. 

Since 2012, I have been Vice-Chair and then Chair (till 2017) of the Audience and Reception studies division of the European Communication Research and Education Association. In this capacity I have organised numerous international panels, conferences, guest-edited journal special issues, amongst other collaborations. 

Much of my work is co-authored with colleagues from within the UK and across Europe. 


Many of my publications are available on the Surrey repository. If not, please e-mail me and I can send you a copy! 


  1. Das, R. & Graefer, A. (2017). Provocative Screens: Offended audiences in Britain and Germany. Palgrave (Pivot).  
  2. Das, R. (2018). The internet and maternal wellbeing: Perinatal relationships, anxieties, literacies, policies. London: Routledge.
  3. Das, R. & Ytre-Arne, B. Eds. (2018). The future of audiences: A foresight analysis. Palgrave Macmillan.

Research Reports

  1. Das, R. & Ytre-Arne, B. Eds. (2017).Audiences, towards 2030: Priorities for audience analysis. Final Report of the Consortium on Emerging Directions in Audience Research. Surrey: CEDAR.
  2. Livingstone, S., & Das, R. (2010) Media, communication and information technologies for the European family: a Report for Family Platform
  3. Livingstone, S., & Das, R. (2010) POLIS Family and Media Report. POLIS, LSE, UK
  4. Livingstone, S., & Das, R., (2009). Public Attitudes Tastes and Standards. London: BBC.

Guest-edited special issues

  1. Das, R. Eds. (2018). A field in flux: The intriguing pasts and the promising future of audience analysis. Special issue of Television and New Media
  2. Das, R. & Ytre-Arne, B. Eds. (2016). Emerging directions in audience research: Lessons from the Consortium on Emerging Directions in Audience Research. Special Issue of Participations, 13(1).
  3. Das, R. Eds (2013). Audiences: A cross-generational dialogue. A special issue of The Communication Review 16 (1) 

Journal articles 

  1. Das, R. (2018). A field in flux: New contours of audience analysis. Television and New Media
  2. Ytre-Arne, B. &; Das, R. (2018). An agenda in the interest of audiences: Facing the challenges of intrusive media technologies. Television and New Media
  3. Das, R. (2018). The mediated subjectivities of the maternal: A critique of childbirth videos on YouTube. Communication Review.
  4. Das, R. & Graefer, A. (2017). Regulatory expectations of offended audiences: The citizen interest in audience discourse. Communication, Culture and Critique. Online First.
  5. Das, R. (2017). Speaking about birth: Visible and silenced narratives in online discussions of childbirth. Social Media + Society.
  6. Das, R & Ytre-Arne, B. (2017). Critical, Agentic, Transmedia: Frameworks and Findings from a Foresight Analysis exercise on audience research. European Journal of Communication.*Gold Open Access*
  7. Das, R. (2017). The mediation of childbirth: Joyful birthing and strategies of silencing on a Facebook advice and support group. European Journal of Cultural Studies, Online First
  8. Das, R. (2017). Audiences: A decade of transformations: Reflections from the CEDAR network on emerging directions in audience analysis. Media, culture and society. Online First.
  9. Das, R. (2017). Stories about a queen: Viewing Bengali television drama in urban India. Critical Studies in Television 12(3).
  10. Graefer, A. & Das, R. (2017). Towards a contextual approach: Audiences, television, and ‘offensive’ humour. European Journal of Cultural Studies.
  11. Das, R. (in press). Populist discourse on a British social media patient-support community: The case of the Charlie Gard support campaign on Facebook.
  12. Das, R. (2016). “I’ve walked this street” : Readings of reality in British children’s reception of the Harry Potter series. Journal of Children and Media 10(3)
  13. Das, R. & Ytre-Arne. B. (2016). After the excitement: An introduction to the work of CEDAR. Participations 13(1). pp 280-288
  14. Das, R. and Pavlickova, T (2014). Is there as author behind this text? A literary aesthetic driven understanding of trust in interactive media. New Media and Society 16 (3)
  15. Das, R. (2014) An appropriate inheritance: On being and not being an audience researcher. International Journal of Media and Cultural Politics 10 (2)
  16. Das, R. (2013). Introduction. In - Audiences: A cross-generational dialogue. A special issue of The Communication Review 16 (1)
  17. Das, R (2013). “To be number one in someone’s eyes…” Children’s introspections about close relationships in reading Harry Potter.European Journal of Communication 28 (5)
  18. Das, R. (2012). Children reading an online genre: Heterogeneity in interpretive work. Popular Communication 10 (4)
  19. Das, R (2012). The task of interpretation. Participations: The international journal of audience and reception studies. 9 (1)
  20. Das, R (2011). Converging perspectives in audience studies and digital literacies: youthful interpretations of an online genre. European Journal of Communication, 26: 4, 343-360
  21. Das, R (2010). Meaning at the Interface: new genres, new modes of interpretative engagement? Communication Review13 (2), 140-159
  22. Das, R (2010). Digital youth, heterogeneity and diversity. Journal of Media Practice 11: 3
  23. Vesnic-Alujevic, L; Seddighi, G; Das, R & Mathieu, D. (revised resubmission invited). A prospective account of audience analysis, towards 2030: Scanning horizons for an unfolding future.
  24. Das, R. (under review). Digital technologies and perinatal well-being: A balanced, context-sensitive approach to placing maternal mental health on the digital health roadmap
  25. Das, R. & Zsubori, A. (revised resubmission invited). Youthful encounters with fantasy: Harry Potter and the emotional trajectories of the adolescent reading experience
  26. Das, R. (under review). Digital sites and perinatal maternal well-being: Balancing optimism and caution
  27. Das, R. (under review). Perinatal interpersonal connections and the internet: Digitally mediated social ties as critical for maternal wellbeing

Book chapters

1. Ong. J. & Das, R. (forthcoming, 2019). The contributions of television audience studies in the networked age: Looking back to look forward. In Shimpach, S. Eds (2019). The Routledge Companion to Global Television
2. Das, R. (forthcoming, 2018) Childbirth online: The mediation of contrasting discourses. In Mascheroni, G, Ponte, C. & Jorge, A. (Eds). Digital parenting: the challenges for families in the digital age. Gothenburg: Nordicom.
3. Das, R. & Ytre-Arne, B. (Forthcoming, 2018). A new crossroads for audiences and audience analysis. In Das, R. & Ytre-Arne, B. (Eds). The Future of Audiences: A foresight analysis. London: Palgrave Macmillan.
4. Das, R. (Forthcoming, 2018). Why still audiences? What can audiences do?. In Das, R. & Ytre-Arne, B. (Eds). The Future of Audiences: A foresight analysis. London: Palgrave Macmillan.
5. Das, R., Ytre-Arne, B. Mathieu, D., & Stehling, M. (forthcoming, 2018) Our methodological approach: The intuitive-analytical balance. In Das, R. & Ytre-Arne, B. (Eds). The Future of Audiences: A foresight analysis. London: Palgrave Macmillan.
6. Vesnic-Alejevic, L., Seddighi, G., Mathieu, D., & Das, R. (Forthcoming, 2018). Drivers and scenarios for 2030. In Das, R. & Ytre-Arne, B. (Eds). The Future of Audiences: A foresight analysis. London: Palgrave Macmillan.
7. Ytre-Arne, B. & Das, R.(Forthcoming, 2018). Where next for audiences in communication? An emergent research agenda. In Das, R. & Ytre-Arne, B. (Eds). The Future of Audiences: A foresight analysis. London: Palgrave Macmillan.
8. Das, R., Kleut, J., & Bolin, G. (2014). New Genres–New Roles for the Audience?. Audience Transformations Shifting Audience Positions in Late Modernity, 30-46.
9. Livingstone, S & Das, R. (2012). The End of Audiences? Theoretical echoes of reception amidst the uncertainties of use. Chapter for the Blackwell Companion to New Media Dynamics, edited by John Hartley, Jean Burgess and Axel Bruns
10. Das, R (2010). The task of interpretation: converging perspectives in audience research and digital literacies? In Nico Carpentier, et. Al.  (Eds.)Media and Communication Studies Intersections and Interventions. Tartu: University of Tartu Press

Recent non-academic writing and engagement 

  1. Das, R. (2017). Key lessons from the role of the media in the Charlie Gard case. Entry for the Surrey Sociology blog.
  2. Das, R. (2017). The Charlie Gard Twitterstorm: A violent and negative impact. Entry for the LSE POLIS thinktank
  3. Das, R.  (2017). Social media and Charlie Gard: Populism versus Public services. Entry for the LSE POLIS thinktank.
  4. Interview with the Guardian (2017). Ten cases like Charlie Gard. The Observer, July 2017.
  5. Das, R. & Graefer, A. (2017). Offended audiences and regulatory expectations: Of red flags and red herrings. Article for Think Leicester, January 2017.
  6. Das, R. (2017). Mothers, parenting and online networks. Interview aired on BBC Three Counties Radio.
  7. Das, R. (2016). Peer to peer forums for mums. Interview given to GEM Radio Leicestershire.
  8. Das, R. (2016). Why we need to pay attention to online peer to peer support forums for new mothers. Think Leicester.
  9. Das, R. & Graefer, A. (2016). What really makes something offensive? The Conversation.
  10. Das, R. (2016). Mediated parenting wars. Parenting for digital futures. LSE. http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/parenting4digitalfuture/2016/08/10/mediated-parenting-wars-a-new-mums-account/
  11. Das, R. (2016). 5 reasons why we need to study childbirth and the media. Think Leicester. July 2016.
  12. Das, R. (2013) LSE POLIS blog. Entry for the Raped! The Indian polity in shamblesDas, R. (2013).


I am Programme Director for the Undergraduate media programmes in the Department. My teaching involves broadly speaking the sociology of digital media, data and emerging technologies. 

I currently continue to supervise two PhD students, affiliated to the University of Leicester. Anna Zsubori is working with Hungarian young people and Disney fandom (2nd year, into fieldwork); Flavio Garcia da Rocha is working with Brazilian media cultures (post-fieldwork, writing up). I welcome PhD students at Surrey. You should contact me with your proposal informally at r(dot)das(at) surrey (dot) ac (dot) uk. 

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