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Core faculty

Nick Admussen

Nick Admussen

Assistant Professor of Chinese Literature, Director of the Contemporary China Initiative (2018-2019)

Nick Admussen holds an M.F.A. in poetry writing from Washington University in St. Louis, and a Ph. D. in East Asian Studies from Princeton. At Cornell, his teaching centers on modern and contemporary Chinese literature and culture. His first book manuscript is called Recite and Refuse: Contemporary Chinese Prose Poetry, and he is also working on research into Lu Xun's Wild Grass, as well as translations of contemporary poetry and prose.


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Andrea Bachner

Associate Professor of Comparative Literature

Professor Bachner holds an M.A. from Munich University, Germany, and a Ph.D. from Harvard University. Her research explores comparative intersections between Sinophone, Latin American, and European cultural productions in dialogue with theories of interculturality, sexuality, and mediality.

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Panle Jia Barwick

Associate Professor of Economics

Founder and Co-Director of Cornell Institute for China Economic Research 

Academic focus: Firm entry, dynamic models, retail.Previous positions: Associate professor, 2011-13; assistant professor, 2006-11; both in economics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.Academic background: B.A., economics, Fudan University, 1997; M.A., economics, Tufts University, 1999; Ph.D., economics, Yale University, 2006.

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Daniel Boucher

Associate Professor, East Asian Religions; H. Stanley Krusen Professor of World Religions

Scholarly focus is Buddhist studies, particularly the early development of the cluster of Indian  Buddhist movements called the Mahayana and their transmission to China in the first few centuries of the Common Era.

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Allen Carlson

Associate Professor, Government

Research Interests: Nontraditional security in China’s emerging relationship with the rest of the international system

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Jian Chen

Professor & Michael J. Zak Chair of History for U.S.-China Relations


Research interest: Historical U.S. - China Relations

Selected Awards, Fellowships and other Academic Honors

Philippe Roman Chair in  History and International Affairs, London  School of Economics, 2008-2009.

Jeffrey Sean Lehman Grant  for Scholarly Exchange with China,  Cornell University, 2007.

Senior Scholar, Woodrow Wilson International   Center for Scholars,  2005- .

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Zhihong Chen

Adjunct Associate Professor & Senior Research Associate, History; Senior Research Associate, CAPS Program

I was trained in three countries and in three different fields: I  received my BA in German Language and Literature from Beijing  Foreign Language  College, and my first MA in  International History from Beijing   Normal University.  I then received my second MA in International Studies and Dr. Phil. in  International History from Cologne University in Germany. I also completed an MS. Ed  in College Teaching concentrating on Chinese language teaching at SIU in the US.

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Sherman Cochran


Hu Shih Professor Emeritus of Chinese History


Specializations: Modern China: social, economic & cultural.

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Brett de Bary

Professor, Asian Studies (Modern Japanese Literature and Film); Professor, Comparative Literature

Brett de Bary received her B. A. from Barnard College, and her M. A. and Ph. D. from Harvard University. She has been Director of Cornell's Society for the Humanities (2003-2005) and Director of the Visual Studies Program (2000-2003), she holds a joint appointment with the Department of Asian Studies and the Department of Comparative Literature at Cornell. Her research interests include modern Japanese fiction and film; the Japanese post-modern; comparative literary theory, translation theory and post-colonial theory; and gender and philosophy.

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Stephanie Divo

Senior Lecturer, (Mandarin) Chinese language

Ms. Divo received both her Ph.D. and MA in Modern Chinese Literature at Cornell University, and has been teaching Mandarin Chinese in the Department of Asian Studies since 1999. Her teaching and research interests are Modern Chinese (Mandarin) language, English as a second language, modern  Chinese literature, Chinese cinema, and academic writing.

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Pedro Erber

Associate Professor of Luso-Brazilian Studies, Department of Romance Studies

Pedro Erber specializes in Brazilian literature, intellectual history, and visual culture. He holds a Ph.D. from Cornell University (2009), M.A. from Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (2000), and B.A. from Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (1998). He is the author of Política e Verdade no Pensamento de Martin Heidegger  (P.U.C.-Rio/Loyola, 2003) and articles on political thought, Brazilian and Japanese art, literature, and aesthetics.

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Gary Fields

Professor, Economics; Professor, International and Comparative Labor, ILR; John P. Windmuller Professor of International and Comparative Labor

Areas of Expertise 

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Magnus Fiskesjö

Associate Professor, Anthropology

Research Interests: Historical and political anthropology; civilizations and barbarians; sovereignty, citizenship, state formations; autonomy and dependence; ethno-politics, ethnicity and ethnonymy in interethnic relations, cultural heritage and archaeology, museums and modernity, East and Southeast Asia (China, Burma, etc.)

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Elias Friedman

Associate Professor of ILR International & Comparative Labor

Eli's primary areas of interest are China, development, education, globalization, social movements, theory, urbanization, and work and labor. Eli currently has two major research projects, the first of which looks at state responses to worker unrest in China and the development of labor relations institutions. The second project is a study of Chinese urbanization, with a particular focus on access to education for rural to urban migrants.

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TJ Hinrichs

Associate Professor, (Pre-modern Chinese) History

TJ Hinrichs is a historian of Song era (960-1279 c.e.) Chinese medical, political, and cultural history. Her forthcoming monograph, Shamans, Witchcraft, and Quarantine:  The Medical Transformation of Governance and Southern Customs in Mid-Imperial China (Harvard East Asia Series), examines how the Song dynastic government made medicine an instrument of social reforms, and the ramifications of those policies for political and medical practice, knowledge, and authority.

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Ying Hua

Associate Professor Design and Environmental Analysis; Codirector, International Workplace Studies Program


Dr. Ying Hua came from a background of architecture, building science and behavioral science.

Current Research Activities:

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Peter Katzenstein

Walter S. Carpenter Jr. Professor of International Studies

Katzenstein's research and teaching lie at the intersection of the fields of international relations and comparative politics. Katzenstein's work addresses issues of political economy, security and culture in world politics. His current research interests focus on the politics of civilizations; on questions of public diplomacy, law, religion, and popular culture; regionalism in world politics; and German politics. Recent books include: Anglo-America and Its Discontents: Civilizational Identities beyond West and East (Routledge, 2012).

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J. Victor Koschmann

Professor of History


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Jane Marie Law

Associate Professor, Asian Studies (Japanese Religions and Ritual Studies)

Educational History


B.A. University of Colorado at Boulder, Religious Studies and Asian Languages

M.Div., University of Chicago Divinity School

Ph.D. University of Chicago, History of Religions


Research Interests

Shanjun Li

Shanjun Li

Associate Professor, Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management (environmental and energy economics and sustainable enterprise); co-director of Cornell Institute for China Economic Research

Shanjun Li is an applied microeconomist with research interests in environmental and energy economics and empirical industrial organization. His research goal is to improve public policy making through understanding the impacts of environmental and energy policies and efficient policy design.

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Thomas Lyons

Tom Lyons (Professor of Economics) studies China's recent economic history. He is especially interested in spatial aspects of development, including patterns of regional specialization and interregional trade, spatial disparities in output and consumption, and institutions and policies that shape the spatial structure of the economy. His current project investigates spatial aspects of development in Fujian province, using county-level sources.

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Daniel Mckee

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Asian Studies; Japanese Bibliographer, Wason Collection; Associate Librarian

Research Interests:

Verbal-visual relations, Tokugawa period art and literature, comedy in Japanese art and literature, kyōka and haikai poetry, surimono and haiga.

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Robin McNeal

Program Director of EAP, Associate Professor of Asian Studies


Research Interest: Social organization and mobilization as evidenced in early military treatises, discovered texts, and works of political philosophy from the pre-Qin period. Robin McNeal's current research focuses on myth and narrative in traditional and contemporary China. 

Robin McNeal received both his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Washington (1995, 2000), majoring in ancient Chinese history. His teaching at Cornell includes classical Chinese language, text studies, and history and thought of the pre-imperial and early imperial eras.

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Andrew Mertha

Professor, Government (Chinese and Cambodian politics)

Research Interests: Andrew Mertha is professor of government, specializing in Chinese and Cambodian politics, particularly on political institutions, the policy process, and the exercise of power. He is the Director of the China and Asia Pacific Studies Program. He is currently working on two projects. The first is an institutional mapping of the organizational structure and policy making process in Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge, from 1970 to 2003. The second project is a comparison of political rectification, purges, and political indoctrination in China and Cambodia.

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Hirokazu Miyazaki

Professor, Anthropology; Director, Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies

Research Interests: Anthropology of knowledge, risk, trust, hope, utopia and anti-utopia, materiality, evidence, economic anthropology, social studies of finance, philosophical anthropology, historical anthropology, anthropology of religion, Christianity, gifts and exchange, Fiji, Japan, U.S.

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Victor Nee

Frank and Rosa Rhodes Professor, Sociology; Director, Ctr. for Study of Economy and Society

Victor Nee's current research interests in economic sociology examines the role of networks and norms in the emergence of economic institutions and organizations:

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An-yi Pan

Associate Professor and Chairman, History of Art

An-yi Pan researches Buddhist Art with special interest in the relation between Chinese intellectual participation in Buddhism and Buddhist painting, Buddhist architecture in relation to precepts, monastic hieratical structure, liturgical as well as spiritual spaces, and trans-continental blossoming of Buddhist teachings and art. He also devotes research to Modern Chinese art and Contemporary Taiwanese art, investigating the impact of colonialism and current geo-political influence on Chinese and Taiwanese art from the late 19th century to now.

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Annelise Riles

Professor of Law and of Anthropology; Jack G. Clarke Professor of Law in Far East Legal Studies; Director of the Clarke Program in East Asian Law and Culture; founder and director of Meridian 180


As an anthropologist, I am attracted to those subjects that seem most resistant to ethnographic study, and as a lawyer, I am committed to anthropology's unique contribution to contemporary legal, political and epistemological debates.  My legal scholarship focuses on the transnational dimensions of laws, markets and culture across the fields of comparative law, conflict of laws, the anthropology of law, public international law and international financial regulation. 

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Kristin Roebuck

Assistant Professor, History


Kristin Roebuck is a historian of modern Japan whose research interests encompass the history of the body, medicine and law, race and sexuality, and Japanese international relations.

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Naoki Sakai

Goldwin Smith Professor of Asian Studies; Professor, Comparative Literature


Thematic: Critical Theory and Intellectual History; Nationalism and Colonialism; Race and Ethnicity; Translation; Inscription and Visuality.

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P. Steven Sangren

Professor, Anthropology


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Victor Seow

Assistant Professor, Department of History


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Suyoung Son

Assistant Professor, Asian Studies


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Keith Taylor

Professor and Chairperson, Department of Asian Studies

Research interests: Sino-Vietnamese History and Literature, Literacy in Vietnam,

Topics of Interest: 

A comprehensive understanding of the history, culture, relgion, and society of Vietnam

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Jeremy Wallace

Associate Professor of Government

 I study authoritarianism, urbanization, and information, with a focus on Chinese politics.  My research centers on questions of authoritarian regime survival and how such regimes--particularly China’s--grapple with threats in two major themes. The first explores the dangers that cities pose to dictators.

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Henry Wan

Professor, Economics

Research interests: International Trade, Trade Dynamics, Trade theory

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Qi Wang

Professor and Chairperson, Human Development


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Ding Xiang Warner

Professor, Asian Studies (Pre-modern Chinese Literature)


Research interests: Chinese literature and literary thought from Han dynasty through the early Song, early and medieval Chinese  intellectual history, and the study of textual production and text culture in pre-modern China.

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Jessica Chen Weiss

Associate Professor of Government; International Faculty Fellow at the Einaudi Center for International Studies


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John Whitman

Professor, Linguistics

My main interest is the problem of language variation: its limits (how much specific subsystems can vary across languages) and predictors (what typological features co-occur systematically). Exploration of this general problem has led me to work on historical linguistics and language acquisition in addition to my central interest in synchronic syntactic variation across typologically similar languages.                         I work mostly on Japanese, secondly on Korean. I have also done research on Australian languages and German.

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Xin Xu

Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Government; Program Manager for the China and Asia-Pacific Studies program (CAPS)


Xin Xu's research and teaching focus on Chinese foreign policy and East Asian international relations. His areas of interest include the identity politics of the Taiwan issue, China’s grand strategy, East Asian security politics, and Olympics and international relations.

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Liren Zheng

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Asian Studies; Curator, Wason Collection

Curator The Charles W. Wason Collection on East Asia Cornell University Library 2006 - the Present

Curator The Dr. Shao You-Bao Overseas Chinese Research and Documentation Center Ohio University Library 1998 - 2006

Jack Zinda

Jack (John) Zinda

Assistant Professor of Development Sociology