SOAS University of London

China & Inner Asia Section, Department of East Asian Languages & Cultures

Dr Elizabeth Woo Li

  • Research


Elizabeth Woo Li
SOAS China Institute

Research Associate

Dr Elizabeth Woo Li
Email address:


Elizabeth Woo Li received a Master of Science in Organization Development (MSOD) from Pepperdine University and a PhD in Chinese Philosophy from Peking University. She is currently a Research Associate in the China and Inner Asia Section of the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures (since January 2019). Before joining SOAS as a Research Associate at the SOAS China Institute (2016-2018), she was a research scholar at the Needham Research Institute (2014-2015). She is also a Senior Member of Robinson College, Cambridge (since 2015) and a Research Associate (Honorary) at the Research Centre for Chinese Philosophy and Culture at The Chinese University of Hong Kong (since 2014). In 2013 she founded (and currently chairs) Sinological Development Charitable Foundation (SDCF), a non-profit organisation aiming to promote Chinese Studies worldwide.


Elizabeth Woo Li’s PhD thesis adopted a comparative approach towards the study of the Northern Song philosopher Zhang Zai (1020-1077) in the current discussions of virtue ethics explicated through philosophical psychology, situationalist moral psychology, and psychotherapy. At the Needham Research Institute she deepened her knowledge of Zhang Zai, by conducting research on his curiosity of the natural world, including his work on astronomy and physics. Her current special research interest lies in cross-cultural analysis, with an emphasis on the application of the Yijing (The Book of Changes) to strategic change management.