[skip to content]

SOAS China Institute

Welcome to the SOAS China Institute

The Institute showcases the strength of Chinese Studies at SOAS in the humanities and the social sciences, from ancient times to the present. The Institute’s new, Masters-level teaching programmes provides students with a balanced and rounded set of highly competitive skills that are in high demand for a broad range of careers. These skills include disciplinary rigour, language proficiency, and wider knowledge of Chinese society, history, economics and culture.

The SOAS China Institute aims to be one of the world-leading centres for China expertise and pre-eminent in London. The SCI channels the unrivalled breadth and depth of SOAS understanding of China to the wider worlds of government, business, media, education, the arts, NGOs and beyond.

Taking full advantage of the wide range of regional expertise at SOAS, the SOAS China Institute initiates world-leading research on the political, economical, social, and cultural connections between China and other parts of Asia, as well as Africa and the Middle East.

Working with SOAS alumni and excellent partners in China and the surrounding region, the Institute is engaging actively in raising the SOAS profile in East Asia and fostering international collaboration. The Institute is also securing strategic philanthropic funding from a range of partners to expand the Institute’s reach and the impact of Chinese Studies at SOAS.

The Institute delivers interdisciplinary research seminars and workshops; organises high profile lecture events; facilitates roundtable meetings on current affairs; and provides specialist briefings, short courses and bespoke training opportunities.

Research Themes

The Institute is working closely with exceptional regional academic and business partners to build a truly world-leading, interdisciplinary research programme across the social sciences and humanities within eight China-focused themes. Learn more...

SOAS China Institute Deputy Director Awarded €1.5M ERC Grant

Dr Jieyu Liu, Deputy Director of SOAS China Institute, has received a European Research Council (ERC) grant of almost €1.5 million for her research on Chinese families in East Asia. The five-year project entitled 'Doing Intimacy: A Multi-sited Ethnography of Modern Chinese Family Life’ will provide the first comprehensive study of practices of intimacy in Chinese families, their intertwining with gender and intergenerational dynamics, and interrelations with local and global change. The research will be rooted in case studies of Chinese communities in urban and rural China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. These sites have been selected to bring to the fore how particular socio-economic-political and cultural configurations feature in intimate family practices.

Key Facts

  • The SOAS China Institute represents the largest community of China scholars under one roof in the whole of Europe
  • The MA Advanced Chinese Studies provides high-level bilingual training in Chinese Studies across more than ten different disciplines in the social sciences and humanities
  • SOAS China scholars offer unrivalled expertise on China, from its earliest history to the present day

Bespoke Training

Bespoke training programmes related to China are specifically designed for particular clients according to their requirements or bid specifications.  

The China Quarterly

The China Quarterly is the leading source for serious scholarship on contemporary China and Taiwan. Rigorously peer-reviewed and edited to the highest standards, the journal publishes timely, in-depth, accurate and comprehensive research. 

Sino-British Fellowship Trust

SOAS receives a generous grant from the Sino-British Fellowship Trust (SBFT), established by the late Dr Elizabeth Frankland Moore, to support individual or co-operative research projects. Research may be conducted either in Britain or in China, or in both countries. Small grants up to £5,000 are available. Find out how to apply.


Institute Staff

Director: Professor Michel Hockx
Deputy Director: Dr Jieyu Liu
Professorial Fellow: Professor Robert Ash
Executive Officer: Li-Sa Whittington
Project Co-ordinator & Administrative Officer: Lucy Driver 

SCI team

From left: Robert, Jieyu, Michel and Li-Sa

Academic Staff

The SOAS China Institute (SCI) represents the largest community of China scholars working together under one roof in Europe. With more than 50 affiliated academics working across the various SOAS departments, the Institute promotes interdisciplinary, critically informed research and teaching on China.

Forthcoming Events

Joint Conference With Beijing Normal University

On 16-17 September 2015 the SOAS China Institute (SCI) is hosting a joint conference with the China Academy of Social Management (CASA) at Beijing Normal University. The theme of the conference is “Comparative Chinese and British Research Perspectives on Social and Administrative Modernization”. The conference is intended to be the first in a series of research-intensive exchanges between the SCI and CASA.
Find out more

SOAS Centenary Timeline

SOAS Centenary Timeline

Exactly 178 years ago, in 1837, the University of London established the UK’s first-ever professorship for Chinese, heralding the founding of Chinese Studies in this country. ​Read the full story.....


Book covers

Recent publications by SCI academic staff.

The China Debate: How healthy is China?

The China Debate:How healthy is China?

On 29 June 2015, Sir Christopher Hum KCMG presented a panel of experts from business, media and academia for its second annual debate, ‘How healthy is China?’.

The discussion explored major challenges over food security, energy supply, environmental sustainability and rising inequality.

Watch the video

SOAS Students

Current MPhil and PhD students pursuing projects on China

Connect With Us