Prof. Xiaonan Deng is a Chinese historian and the Boya Chair Professor at Peking University's Centre for Research on Ancient Chinese History. She is known for her research on Song history, middle period Chinese bureaucratic systems and female history of the Tang and Song. She is currently serving as the director of the Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences of PKU. Deng completed her undergraduate degree in Chinese history at Peking University in 1982. She graduated from her master's in 1985 from the same institution. She became a lecturer in 1987, an assistant professor in 1991, and was made a professor in 1997.
Xiaonan Deng ran a 16-episode open-access class online with Yan Buke, and led the research group of middle period infomation channel. She visited Yale University in the year of 1997, and attended Harvard University as a Coordinate Research Scholar specialising in Chinese History at the Harvard-Yenching Institute in 2014, where she taught the class Personnel Administration of the Song Civil Service. She has also given lectures on Chinese history, and women's history at Wurzberge University, Tubingen University, Oxford University, and held several international workshops.