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Yang Zhang Asst Professor School of International Service

Send email to Yang Zhang
(202) 885-1678
SIS - School of International Service
SIS - 246
M/W 3:30-5pm and appointment via email
Ph.D. and M.A. in Sociology, University of Chicago

M.A. and B.A., Tsinghua University

Languages Spoken
Book Currently Reading
Martin Hollis, The Philosophy of Social Science
Professor Yang Zhang’s research covers the areas in comparative historical sociology, political sociology, contentious politics, political networks, and philosophy of the social sciences. His book project examines the emergence and development of large-scale religious and ethnic rebellions in the Qing Empire of China during the mid-19th century. Relatedly, he studies state building and empire building of late imperial China in comparative perspective. In another project, Prof. Zhang studies the evolving network of political elites and its effects on policy making in China's reform era. He also examines environmental governance, organizations, and movements in contemporary China. In addition, he has been studying topics related to social science philosophy, such as causality, contingency, temporality, counterfactual, and falsificationism. Prof. Zhang has published articles in American Journal of Sociology, Journal of Historical Sociology, Mobilization, Voluntas, and Research in Social Movements, Conflicts, and Change. He has won the Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship Dissertation Award in 2017 from American Sociological Association’s Section on Collective Behavior and Social Movements. At SIS, Prof. Zhang teaches courses on Bottom-Up Politics, Contentious Politics, Empire and Imperialism, Global and Comparative Governance, and Research Design Seminar.
For the Media
To request an interview for a news story, call AU Communications at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.


Fall 2021

  • SIS-619 Special Studies in Int'l Pol: Empire: Past and Present

  • SIS-810 Research Design

Spring 2022

  • SISU-280 Global/Comparative Governance

  • SISU-380 Topics in Global & Comp Govern: Empire and Imperialism