I am Fei Yan, and I am a Ph.D. candidate in Sociology at University of Oxford. I am also a visiting student researcher in the Department of Sociology at Stanford University. My research interests and previous work revolve around several important themes in sociology:

       (1)  political sociology and social movements, focusing on the dynamics of collective protest and
contentious politics;
       (2)  social inequality and poverty, focusing on the
institutional change within transitional economies and authoritarian settings;
       (3)  sociology of China and Hong Kong studies


My doctoral dissertation examines mass factionalism and collective violence during the Chinese Cultural Revolution from 1966 to 1968. In conventional social structural model, mass actors’ decisions are affected by functionally differentiated interests inherent in their pre-existing social positions. As a result, similar occupational and status groups in the previous hierarchical structure would make similar political choices that lead them to form well-defined competing factions. In contrast, I propose a contextual process model to delineate dynamic processes of interactions among movement actors and organizations. I argue that the choices of mass actors are highly circumscribed by their entrenched local political context. When confronting with an uncertain and ambiguous political environment, mass actors in structurally similar positions would make different political choices with fluid interests and flowing identities.

A native of Nanjing, China, I have received my Bachelor
s degree in Sociology from Fudan University, and further earned my first Masters degree in Comparative Social Policy from University of Oxford and second Master’s degree in East Asian Studies from Stanford University. From 2005 to 2008, I had been working in the Department of Applied Social Studies at City University of Hong Kong as a Research Associate.

Meanwhile, I am also extensively engaged myself in public debates. At present, I have published more than 200 op-ed articles and opinion commentaries in a variety of eminent media outlets including Financial Times and Fortune.

Please check my Google Scholar Profile.

Please find links to my Curriculum Vitae (PDF).