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Core faculty

Nick Admussen

Nick Admussen

Associate 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 Chinese literature and culture in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. His research applies close reading, translation, techniques from sociology, and literary theory in an attempt to read and understand contemporary poetry, and by extension to invent and refine methods of interpretation through which people separated by linguistic or political distance can come to understand one another.

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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

Panle Jia Barwick is an associate professor in the Economics Department at Cornell University and a faculty research associate at National Bureau of Economic Research. Her research interests are empirical industrial organization, applied econometrics, and Chinese economy. Her research has focused on three main topics: the effect of firm entry on market structure, the welfare consequences of market inefficiencies, and the application of new estimation techniques to empirical studies.

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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.


Andrew Campana

Post-Doctoral Associate

Andrew Campana is a scholar of modern and contemporary Japanese literature and media. His research centers on exploring the possibilities and impossibilities of expression at moments of media transition, focusing in particular on poetry, digital media, and disability. In his current book project on Japanese poetry across media, he engages with expanded poetic practice from the 1920s to the present as a site where poets in Japan embraced and grappled with new media technologies like film, tape recording, television, and the internet.

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Allen Carlson

Associate Professor, Government

Allen Carlson is an Associate Professor in Cornell University’s Government Department. He was granted his PhD from Yale University’s Political Science Department. His undergraduate degree is from Colby College. In 2005 he was chosen to participate in the National Committee’s Public Intellectuals Program, and he currently serves as Director of Cornell’s China and Asia Pacific Studies program and advisor of its East Asia Program.

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Jian Chen

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

Historical U.S. - China Relations - FACULTY EMERITAS

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- .

Sharing honors for the “Emmy  Award for Outstanding Achievement in News and Documentary Research” ("Declassified:  Nixon in China"),  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. FACULTY EMERITAS


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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.



Yue (Mara) Du

Assistant Professor of History

Mara Du’s research focuses on the history of modern China (17th century – present), particularly on law, gender, and state-building. Her book manuscript in process, State Is Family: State-Sponsored Filiality and China’s Empire-to-Nation Transformation, explores how the Qing empire (1644-1911) legitimized itself and governed its subjects through the legalized cult of filial piety.

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Pedro Erber

Program Director of EAP, Associate Professor of Luso-Brazilian Studies, Department of Romance Studies

(2019-2020 on leave) 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

Gary Fields is the John P. Windmuller Professor of International and Comparative Labor and Professor of Economics at Cornell University. He is the 2014 winner of the IZA Prize in Labor Economics, the top world-wide award in the field. He has been an Ivy League teacher and professor for more than forty years. After receiving Bachelor's, Master's, and Ph.D. degrees in economics from the University of Michigan, he became an assistant professor at Yale University at age 25 and an associate professor at age 29. Two years later, he took up a tenured professorship at Cornell University.

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Magnus Fiskesjö

Associate Professor, Anthropology

General anthropology; historical and political anthropology; civilizations and barbarians; sovereignty, state power, citizenship; autonomy; slavery; ethno-politics and interethnic relations; archaeology; cultural heritage, museums and modernity; East and Southeast Asia (China, Burma, etc.), also Europe.

Spring 2020 course poster

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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

Connections between intimate experiences such as illness and personal transformation; communal practices such as medical training and religious rites; and broader historical shifts such as the consolidation of the civil service examination system, commercialization and urbanization, the spread of printing, and the development of landscape painting.

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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. Dr. Hua has been conducting research on methodology for post-occupancy evaluation (POE); interaction between occupants and building systems and resulted influence on building performance; and impact of workplace concepts on behavioral and organizational outcomes. She is also studying strategies to engage and motivate multiple stakeholders in sustainable building practice and in resilience building efforts in multiple building markets in the U.S., Japan, and China. 

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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

FACULTY EMERITAS- The focal point of my research is the nexus between  political thought and action, primarily but not exclusively in  twentieth-century Japan.  In my most recent work I have explored new perspectives on thought and action  during Japan’s  war years (1931-45), in the context of such themes as pan-Asianism, the  discourse on economic ethics, colonialism, and leftwing movements.

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Jane Marie Law

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

"All of my research explores the interface between living communities and religious ideologies and praxis, with fieldwork as a core methodology. My early work focused on the ritual uses of human effigies in Japan, and explored how puppetry represents a kind of ritual logic.

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

Professor of Economics

Tom Lyons 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

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


Fall 2019

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Robin McNeal

Associate Professor of Asian Studies

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. Research interests: 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. 


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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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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.Kristin is drafting a book manuscript entitled Japan Reborn: Mixed-Race Children and the Family of Nations after World War II.

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Naoki Sakai

Goldwin Smith Professor of Asian Studies; Professor, Comparative Literature

Naoki Sakai teaches in the departments of Comparative Literature and Asian Studies and is a member of the graduate field of History at Cornell University. He has published in a number of languages in the fields of comparative literature, intellectual history, translation studies, the studies of racism and nationalism, and the histories of semiotic and literary multitude - speech, writing, corporeal expressions, calligraphic regimes, and phonographic traditions.

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Suyoung Son

Assistant Professor, Asian Studies

Suyoung Son is a literary and cultural historian of early modern China (1500-1900). Her research focuses on the narrative tradition and social practice of writing and reading in the historical conditions of print culture, commercialization, and urbanization. She is currently working on a book manuscript, Publish or Perish: Publishing and the Making of Literature in Seventeenth-Century China, which explores the ways in which the material conditions of print reshaped the production, circulation, and reception of literary texts in the late Ming and early Qing periods.

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Keith Taylor

Professor and Chairperson, Department of Asian Studies

K. W. Taylor is Professor of Sino-Vietnamese Cultural Studies in the Department of Asian Studies at Cornell University. He has published several books and many articles about Vietnamese history and literature, most recently A History of the Vietnamese (Cambridge University Press, 2013). He has pioneered the teaching in North America of literary Vietnamese in the character script based on literary Chinese called chữ Nôm.

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Jeremy Wallace

Associate Professor of Government

Studies 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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Qi Wang

Professor and Chairperson, Human Development

My research interests are at the intersection of cognitive and social development. Integrating developmental, cognitive, and sociocultural perspectives, my research examines the mechanisms underlying the development of a variety of social-cognitive skills including autobiographical memory, self, and emotion knowledge.

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Ding Xiang Warner

Professor, Asian Studies (Pre-modern Chinese Literature)

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

Jessica Chen Weiss is Associate Professor of Government at Cornell University. She is the author of Powerful Patriots: Nationalist Protest in China’s Foreign Relations (Oxford University Press, 2014). The dissertation on which it is based won the 2009 American Political Science Association Award for best dissertation in international relations, law and politics.

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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 PresentCurator 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

John Zinda studies social and environmental change, primarily in rural China. His research and teaching examine how state policies and community practices intersect to shape livelihoods and landscapes in contexts of agricultural development programs, afforestation efforts, biodiversity conservation, tourism operations, and labor migration.