Yu Tao

BA (Peking), MPhil (Cantab.), DPhil (Oxon.), Dr

  • The University of Western Australia (M257), 35 Stirling Highway,

    6009 Perth


Personal profile


Dr Yu Tao is an Associate Professor in Chinese Studies at the University of Western Australia (UWA), where he teaches contemporary Chinese society and language and coordinates the Chinese Studies course, which includes four streams of a major and two minors. He served as the Discipline Chair of Asian Studies between 2022 and 2023.

Dr Tao was trained in political science and sociology at Peking, Cambridge, and Oxford. His current research, centred on Global China, aims to provide theoretical insights and empirical evidence to address two interconnected questions. First, how are China’s government and governance systems adapting to and reacting within an increasingly globalised world? Second, what are the manifestations, key drivers, and perceptions of globalised Chineseness across diverse fields such as religion, education, migration, and heritage? Dr Tao's research pays particular attention to the interaction between religious groups, civic organisations and local state agencies. He also conducts research into evidence-based pedagogical innovations and broader teaching and learning matters.

In addition to his academic publications in reputable English and Chinese journals, Dr Tao has also published dozens of op-ed articles in newspapers, magazines, and online platforms.

Dr Tao is the China regional editor of Asian Studies Review, the flagship journal of the Asian Studies Association of Australia. He is also a fellow of the Higher Education Academy, the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland, and the Royal Asiatic Society. 

Dr Tao welcomes proposals for doctoral research on contemporary Chinese society and politics, ideally with an emphasis on state-society relations.

Roles and responsibilities

Coordinator, Chinese Studies
Coordinator, ASIA3003 (Social Issues in Contemporary China); CHIN2801 (China Field Study); CHIN3409 (Chinese 9: Understanding the Chinese State); CHIN3410 (Chinese 10: Understanding Chinese Society); SOCS3888 (Asia Pacific Field Studies)

Previous positions

Senior Lecturer & Course Leader in Asia Pacific Studies, University of Central Lancashire, 2016-17
Lecturer in Asia Pacific Studies, University of Central Lancashire, 2014-16
Tutor for Undergraduate and International Exchange Students, University of Oxford, 2012-2014
Tutor for Undergraduate Students, University of Cambridge, 2009-10



Funding overview

American Political Science Association: Travel Grant (2015)

Asian Studies Association of Australia: Event Grant (2023)

Australian Academy of Humanities: Humanities Travelling Fellowship (2022)

Europe China Research and Advice Network: Policy Report Commission (2012)

European Association for Chinese Studies: Biennial Young Scholar Finalist Award (2014)

Japan Foundation, Sydney: Japanese Studies Mini-Grant (2021)

StudyPerth: Student Engagement and Support Grant (2021)

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) of the Australian Government: New Colombo Plan Mobility Grants (twice 2022, 2023)

The Herbert and Valmae Freilich Project for the Study of Bigotry: Annual Early Career Research Small Grant (2021)

The National Foundation of Australia-China Relations: Nationally Competitive Project Grant (2023)

The National Library of Australia: Asian Studies Grant (2020)

Political Studies Association (UK): Postgraduate Access Grant (twice 2015, 2010) / Overseas Exchange Grant (2012) / Early-career Events Grant (2016)

The University of Central Lancashire: Faculty Research Funding (2016, 2017) / University Undergraduate Research Intern Scheme (2016)

The University of Western Australia: FABLE Research Accelerator Scheme (between 2018 and 2021)

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
  • SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals

External positions

Council Member, The Asian Studies Association of Australia

Council Member, The Chinese Studies Association of Australia

Associate, University of Melbourne

Member, China Studies Centre, University of Sydney

Industry keywords

  • Government
  • Not for Profit
  • Education

Research expertise keywords

  • Local Government Issues
  • Religion
  • Religion And Politics
  • China
  • Local Governance
  • Social Capital
  • Chinese Heritage
  • Global China


Dive into the research topics where Yu Tao is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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