Dr Panayiota Tsatsou

Associate Professor

School/Department: Media Communication and Sociology, School of


Address: Office: Address: 1.05 Room Astley Clarke Building University of Leicester University Road LE1 7RH




My research lies in the broader field of digital media research. I research the areas of digital divides/digital inclusion and Internet studies and my work addresses phenomena concerning the digital inclusion/exclusion of vulnerable people, digital/Internet research, digital media and civic activism, children and the Internet, gender and the Internet, and digital policy and regulation.

I have published widely on digital media and the role of ordinary people, vulnerable populations and researchers as digital media actors. My work aims to contribute to innovative and evidence-based solutions to issues arising in people’s relationships with digital media. I have developed research collaborations in the UK and internationally and have presented my work in diverse venues.

I am the author of Digital Divides in Europe: Culture, Politics and the Western-Southern Divide (2011, Peter Lang), which examines the hotly debated subject of digital divides and addresses the Western–Southern divide in Europe. I am also the author of Internet Studies: Past, Present and Future Directions (2014, Ashgate), which offers a critical account of the past, present and future study of the Internet.  I'm the co-editor of Social Inclusion and Usability of ICT-enabled Services (Routledge, 2017), which explores a wide range of issues concerning innovative ICT-enabled digital services, their usability and their consequent role in social inclusion. I'm also the editor of Vulnerable People and Digital Inclusion: Theoretical and Applied Perspectives (Palgrave Macmillan, 2022), which offers an up-to-date examination of the role of digital inclusion in vulnerable people’s social inclusion and includes expert practitioner perspectives from those working to improve vulnerable people’s welfare.


In terms of externally and internally funded research:
In 2011, I led on an AHRC funded research project on digital inclusion and minority communities in Wales, UK.
In the period 2011-2014, I worked as Co-investigator in a British Academy funded research on digital inclusion, identity and literacy in the UK. 
In 2014-2015, I conducted research on the role of digital technologies in social research in the UK that was funded by the EPSRC Communities and Culture Network+ (CCN+) and the College of Social Sciences at the University of Leicester. 
In 2017, I completed a focus group research on digital inclusion of vulnerable communities in the UK, the published outputs of which inform and pave the way for future research on the current status and future prospects of digital inclusion of vulnerable people in the UK and the implications for those people's social inclusion and welfare. 

I am the Co-Investigator in an ESRC grant application for the study of discourses of blaming of ethnic and religious minorities for the spread of the Covid-19 in the UK and, in preparation of this application, I am currently involved in the conduct of Twitter data analysis.
I have secured internal funding for the conduct of pilot research entitled ‘Social lab for vulnerable people’s digital inclusion: a mélange of theory and real-life experiences’.





2022, Vulnerable People and Digital Inclusion: Theoretical and Applied Perspectives? Palgrave Macmillan (Edited volume).

2017, Social Inclusion and Usability of ICT-enabled Services. London: Routledge (Co-edited with J. Choudrie and S. Kurnia).

2014, Internet Studies: Past, Present and Future Directions. Surrey: Ashgate Publishing.

2011, Digital Divides in Europe: Culture, Politics and the Western-Southern Divide. Berlin: Peter Lang.


Journal articles

2022, Editor’s introduction to Special Issue: Vulnerable People’s Digital Inclusion in a Perplexed Milieu of Intersectional Vulnerabilities. New Media & Society 24(2): 271–8.  doi:10.1177/14614448211063175.

2021, Vulnerable people’s digital inclusion: Insights into intersectionality. Information, Communication & Society [online first]. doi:10.1080/1369118X.2021.1873402

2021, Aging: The two faces of Janus in digital inclusion? International Journal of Communication 15(2021): 1309-29.

2021, Is digital inclusion fighting disability stigma? Opportunities, barriers, and recommendations, Disability & Society 36(5): 702-29. doi:10.1080/09687599.2020.1749563

2020, Digital inclusion of people with disabilities: A qualitative study of intra-disability diversity in the digital realm. Behaviour & Information Technology 39(9): 995-1010. doi:10.1080/0144929X.2019.1636136

2018, Emerging research communities of practice versus the popular vision of interdisciplinarity? Insights from digital research in the United Kingdom. Social Science Quarterly 99(5): 1733-49. doi:10.1111/ssqu.12531 (with Y. Zhao).

2018, Social media and informal organisation of citizen activism: Lessons from the use of Facebook in the Sunflower Movement. Social Media + Society 4(1). doi:10.1177/2056305117751384

2018, Literacy and training in digital research: researchers’ views in five social science and humanities disciplines. New Media & Society 20(3): 1240-59. doi:10.1177/1461444816688274

2017, ‘Travelling with the traveller’: an ethnographic framework for the study of migrants’ digital inclusion. JOMEC Journal 11: 4-22. doi:10.18573/10.18573/j.2017.10140 (with N. Boursinou).

2016, A ‘Two-level social capital analysis’ of the role of online communication in civic activism: lessons from the role of Facebook in the Sunflower Movement. Social Media + Society 2(4). doi:10.1177/2056305116671967 (with Y. Zhao).

2016, Can media and communication researchers turn the present challenges of research impact and interdisciplinarity into future opportunities? The International Communication Gazette 78(7): 650–6. doi:10.1177/1748048516655718

2016, Digital technologies in the research process: Lessons from the digital research community in the UK. Computers in Human Behaviour. 61(August 2016): 597–608. doi:10.1016/j.chb.2016.03.053.

2014, Responsibility to Report: the politics of British press reporting of the Darfur humanitarian crisis. Global Media and Communication 10(2): 193219. doi:10.1177/1742766514540980 (with C. Armstrong).

2012, Tackling cyberbullying: Review of empirical evidence regarding successful responses by students, parents and schools. International Journal of Conflict and Violence 6(2): 28393 (with S. Perren, L. Corcoran, H. Cowie, F. Dehue, D. Garcia, C. McGuckin, D. Smahel, A. Sevcikova. & T. Völlink).

2012, The Role of Social Culture in Internet Adoption in Greece: Unpacking “I Don't Want to Use the Internet” and Frequency of Use. The Information Society 28(3): 17488. doi:10.1080/01972243.2012.670190

2011, Why Internet use? A quantitative examination of the role of everyday life and Internet policy and regulation. Technology in Society 33(12): 7383. doi:10.1016/j.techsoc.2011.03.016

2011, Digital divides revisited: What is new about divides and their research? Media, Culture & Society 33(2): 31731. doi:10.1177/0163443710393865

2011, EU regulations on telecommunications: The role of subsidiarity and mediation. First Monday 16(1).

2010, Internet policy and regulation through a socio-cultural lens: A dialogue between society’s culture and decision-makers? Javnost-The Public 17(3): 2338. doi:10.1080/13183222.2010.11009034

2010, Towards a Taxonomy for Regulatory Issues in a Digital Business Ecosystem in the EU. Journal of Information Technology 25(3): 288–307. doi:10.1057/jit.2009.22 (with S. Elaluf-Calderwood & J. Liebenau).

2010, The role of everyday life and resistance culture in non-adoption of the internet in Greece: A qualitative examination. Questions de communication 18(2010): 6388.

2010, Child pornography on the internet and policy questions. The Greek case. Communication Issues Journal 6(11).  

2009, Children and the Internet: A multinational research agenda. Guest Editors’ Introduction. Journal of Children and Media 3(4): 309–15. doi:10.1080/17482790903233317 (with S. Livingstone).

2009, E-commerce and online buying behavior: the rushed virtual consumers? A qualitative analysis of the Greek case. BLIK: Journal for audiovisual culture 2.2: 309.

2009, Reconceptualising Time and Space in the Era of Electronic Media and Communications. PLATFORM: Journal of media and communication 1: 1132.

Book chapters

2022, Editor’s Introduction & Conclusion. In P. Tsatsou (Ed.) Vulnerable People and Digital Inclusion: Theoretical and Applied Perspectives? Palgrave Macmillan.

2017, Literacy and identity links forging digital inclusion? Critical reflections and signposts from a qualitative study. In J. Choudrie S. Kurnia and P. Tsatsou (Eds.) Social Inclusion and Usability of ICT-enabled Services (pp.335-58). London: Routledge (with G. Youngs and C. Watt).

2017, Introduction. In J. Choudrie S. Kurnia and P. Tsatsou (Eds.) Social Inclusion and Usability of ICT-enabled Services. London: Routledge (with J. Choudrie and S. Kurnia).

2017, Conclusion. In J. Choudrie S. Kurnia and P. Tsatsou (Eds.) Social Inclusion and Usability of ICT-enabled Services. London: Routledge (with J. Choudrie and S. Kurnia).

2013, Coping with cyberbullying: How can we prevent cyberbullying and how victims can cope with it? In P.K. Smith and G. Steffgen (Eds.) Cyberbullying Through the New Media: Findings from an International Network (pp. 121–35). East Sussex: Psychology Press (with C. McGuckin, S. Perren, L. Corcoran, H. Cowie, F. Dehue, A. Sevcikova & T. Völlink).

2013, Digital inclusion and connectivity of minority communities: the case of communities of disabled people. In J. Choudrie and C. Middleton. (Eds.) Management of Broadband Technology and Innovation: Policy, Deployment, and Use (pp. 12241). London: Routledge (with G. Higgs, I. Stafford, R. Fry. & R. Berry).

2013, Digital inclusion: a case for micro perspective. In G. Youngs (Ed.) Digital World: Connectivity, Creativity and Rights (pp. 5263). London: Routledge.

2011, Gender and sexuality in the Internet era. In K. Ross (Ed.) The Handbook of Gender, Sex and Media (pp. 51634). Blackwell Publishing.

2011, Mobile phones like any other ICT? The case of Greece and its adoption of mobile phones from a socio-cultural perspective. In Y.K. Dwivedi (Ed.) Adoption, Usage, and Global Impact of Broadband Technologies: Diffusion, Practice and Policy (pp. 92108). Hershey, USA: IGI Global.

2010, The role of social culture in evaluation of Internet policies. The case of everyday and resistant culture in Greece. In E. Adomi (Ed.) Handbook of Research on Information Communication Technology Policy: Trends, Issues and Advancements (pp. 63151). Hershey, USA: IGI Global.

2010, Digital Divides in Greece: the role of culture and regulation. Implications for the European Information Society. In L. Fortunati, J. Vincent, J. Gebhardt, A. Petrovcic & O. Vershinskaya (Eds.) Interacting with Broadband Society (pp. 20725). Berlin: Peter Lang.

2009, Digital divides and children in Europe. In S. Livingstone & L. Haddon (Eds.) Kids Online (pp. 107-19). London: Policy Press (with P. Pruulmann-Vengerfeldt. & M-F. Murru).

2008, Digital divides and the role of policy and regulation in Greece: a qualitative study. In Avgerou, C. Smith, M.L. and P.v.d. Besselaar (Eds.) Social Dimensions of Information and Communication Technology Policy (pp. 14160). NY: Springer.

2007, Theoretical and Methodological Foundations for a Knowledge Base of Regulatory Issues: Trust in Digital Business Ecosystems. In F. Nachira, P. Dini, A. Nicolai, M. Le Louarn and L. Rivera Lèon (Eds.) Digital Ecosystems Book (pp. 98105). European Union Research Programme FP6 (with S. Elaluf-Calderwood).



I have several PhD completions and I currently supervise a significant number of PhD students. I welcome enquiries from prospective research students who wish to undertake projects related to the following research fields: Social and digital exclusion; Vulnerable people and their digital inclusion; Role of digital media in the lives of vulnerable/marginalised populations (e.g. ethnic minorities elderly people with disabilities); Digital Research; Digital activism. 


I apply research-led teaching and I teach undergraduate and postgraduate courses on digital media and digital media research. I also teach methodological courses and methods applied to media and communication research. I currently convene the following year-long modules: MS7060 The Sociology of Digital Media (postgraduate module) & MS3030 Media Dissertation (undergraduate module).

Press and media

Digital inclusion/exclusion;

Digital research;

Digital inclusion and policy-making;

Digital politics and activism.


Prizes & Scholarships (professional, not study-related)

Superstar Awards: Best Lecturer Nominee, Leicester Students’ Union, University of Leicester. 2019-20, 2021-22.

University of Leicester Merit Award on Leadership for Curriculum Transformation 2017.

ESRC Methods Training Bursary Sentiment analysis: How it works and how to use it in the social sciences University of Manchester.

ESRC Methods Training Bursary Gathering and analysing social media data from Twitter YouTube University of Manchester. 


Professional Esteem

Panelist, AHRC M4C Subject Area Panel, AHRC-funded Midlands4Cities Doctoral Training Partnership, 16th January 2023.

Research Escalator mentor, Communication and Technology Division of the International Communication Association. 2022-23.

Committee Member, Association of Internet Researchers (AoIR) Nancy Baym Book Award, 2021.

Future Leaders Fellowships (FLF) Peer Review College (PRC) Member, UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). Term: 2021-2025.

External Examiner of BA(Hons) Media and Cultural Studies (2016-18) & MA Contemporary Media (2016-20), University of Wolverhampton.

External Examiner of MA International Political Communication (2019-23). Bournemouth University.

Member of the External Evaluation Committee (EEC) for accreditation of the MA in Media, Law and Governance, Cyprus Agency of Quality Assurance and Accreditation in Higher Education.

External Evaluation Committee (EEC) Chair/Member, Cyprus Agency of Quality Assurance and Accreditation in Higher Education.

Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH) Expert, European Commission Directorate General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology.

Social Sciences Panel Member & Evaluator for FCT Investigator Call, Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia, I. P.(FCT), Portugal.

Reviewer of Research Applications for the UK Research Councils: EPSRC, AHRC, ESRC.

Book Proposal Reviewer for: Routledge, Sage, Ashgate, University of Toronto Press.

Reviewer for: Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication; New Media & Society; Information, Communication & Society; Social Media + Society; The Information Society; Journal of Communication; International Journal of Communication; Telecommunications Policy; Learning, Media and Technology; Mass Communication and Society; Journal of Children and Media; First Monday; and others.



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