Yang Cao

Associate Professor
Fretwell 490-D
704-687-7780

Faculty Website

Associate Professor, Department of Sociology
Associate Professor, Public Policy Program

Office location: Fretwell 490D
Office hours: Wednesday 9:00-10:00 a.m., Friday 9:00-10:00 a.m.
Research Cluster(s):  Inequality and Opportunity Policy
Research Interests: Institutional Change; Social Inequality; Employment Relations; Values and Value Change

Dr. Cao received his Ph.D. in Sociology from Cornell University. His research focuses on social change in contemporary China, and has been awarded funding from the National Science Foundation, the Society for Human Resource Management Foundation, and the East West Center. He has published in leading sociology journals and journals in economics, management, and Asian studies. His current projects examine how economic development, institutional change, and state policy reshape values in China.


Recent and/or Relevant Publications

  • Wei Zhao and Yang Cao. 2017. “Institutional Compatibility and the Diffusion of ‘Best Practices’: Human Resource Management in Foreign-Invested Enterprises in China.” Chinese Sociological Review 49 (1): 1-34.
  • Zongshi Chen and Yang Cao. 2016.“Chinese Private Corporate Philanthropy: Social Responsibility, Legitimacy Strategy, and the Role of Political Capital.” Chinese Sociological Review 48 (2): 108-136.
  • Zhenhua Su, Yang Cao, Jingkai He, and Waibin Huang. 2015. “Perceived Social Mobility and Political Trust in China.” African and Asian Studies 14 (4): 315-336.
  • Yang Cao and Beth A. Rubin. 2014. “Market Reform and the Deinstitutionalization of Standard Work Hours in Postsocialist China.” Industrial & Labor Relations Review 67 (3): 864-890.
  • Kate Frear, Yang Cao, and Wei Zhao. 2012. “CEO Background and the Adoption of Western-Style Human Resource Practices in China.” International Journal of Human Resource Management 23 (19): 4009-4024.
  • Yang Cao and Wei Zhao. 2009. “Localization in the Age of Globalization: Institutional Duality and Labor Management Structures in China’s Foreign-Invested Enterprises.” Research in the Sociology of Work 19: 165-201.
  • Yang Cao and Chiung-Yin Hu. 2007. “Gender and Job Mobility in Postsocialist China: A Longitudinal Study of Job Changes in Six Coastal Cities.” Social Forces 85 (4): 1535-1560.