About

I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science. My pronouns are she/her. I study national identity, conflict, and development in the context of migration, particularly within the Global South.

A central focus of my research is to bring evidence to questions, and often misperceptions, within scholarly and public debates about the effects of migrants on host communities. A few questions that I’m thinking about these days: How does the presence of forcibly displaced migrants affect local development and public goods provision, conflict, and voting behavior? For minority citizens who share ethnic and cultural ties with migrants, what explains why they are sometimes inclusive and pro-migrant, but other times, they seek to differentiate themselves by excluding or “othering” migrants? And in contexts marked by anti-migrant prejudice and discrimination, can certain types of interventions — like prolonged intergroup contact between locals and migrants — work in reducing tensions? These projects span multiple regions, including East Africa, Central Asia, and South America.

In a second strand of research, I design and experimentally evaluate interventions in politically challenging contexts, alongside academic and non-governmental organization collaborators. This work includes the first individual-level randomized controlled trial of economic interventions at wartime, conducted in Afghanistan, and a series of experimental studies to understand the link between citizen self-efficacy and public goods participation in Tanzania. Because collecting data in these contexts often requires asking sensitive survey questions, I also develop statistical methods to protect respondent privacy and safety.

I received my Ph.D. in 2019 from the Department of Politics at Princeton University. Prior to Princeton, I was a social work case manager for the Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture, working with refugees and asylum-seekers from West and Central Africa, and South and Central Asia.

I am a CEGA faculty affiliate and an executive committee member for the UBC Centre for Migration Studies.

From 2021 through 2023, I will be on leave as a Harvard Academy Scholar. During this time, I will not be supervising new graduate students.


Publications

“Team and Nation: Sports, Nationalism, and Attitudes toward Refugees” (with Leah Rosenzweig). Forthcoming, Comparative Political Studies.

“Self-Efficacy and Citizen Engagement in Development: Experimental Evidence from Tanzania” (with Evan Lieberman). Forthcoming, Journal of Experimental Political Science.

Can Economic Assistance Shape Combatant Support in Wartime? Experimental Evidence from Afghanistan” (with Jason Lyall and Kosuke Imai). American Political Science Review, Volume: 114, Issue 1 (February 2020), pages 126-143.

Design and Analysis of the Randomized Response Technique” (with Graeme Blair and Kosuke Imai). Journal of the American Statistical Association, Volume: 110, Issue: 511 (Sept. 2015).


Yang-Yang Zhou

Assistant Professor

I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science. My pronouns are she/her. I study national identity, conflict, and development in the context of migration, particularly within the Global South.

A central focus of my research is to bring evidence to questions, and often misperceptions, within scholarly and public debates about the effects of migrants on host communities. A few questions that I'm thinking about these days: How does the presence of forcibly displaced migrants affect local development and public goods provision, conflict, and voting behavior? For minority citizens who share ethnic and cultural ties with migrants, what explains why they are sometimes inclusive and pro-migrant, but other times, they seek to differentiate themselves by excluding or "othering" migrants? And in contexts marked by anti-migrant prejudice and discrimination, can certain types of interventions — like prolonged intergroup contact between locals and migrants — work in reducing tensions? These projects span multiple regions, including East Africa, Central Asia, and South America.

In a second strand of research, I design and experimentally evaluate interventions in politically challenging contexts, alongside academic and non-governmental organization collaborators. This work includes the first individual-level randomized controlled trial of economic interventions at wartime, conducted in Afghanistan, and a series of experimental studies to understand the link between citizen self-efficacy and public goods participation in Tanzania. Because collecting data in these contexts often requires asking sensitive survey questions, I also develop statistical methods to protect respondent privacy and safety.

I received my Ph.D. in 2019 from the Department of Politics at Princeton University. Prior to Princeton, I was a social work case manager for the Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture, working with refugees and asylum-seekers from West and Central Africa, and South and Central Asia.

I am a CEGA faculty affiliate and an executive committee member for the UBC Centre for Migration Studies.

From 2021 through 2023, I will be on leave as a Harvard Academy Scholar. During this time, I will not be supervising new graduate students.

"Team and Nation: Sports, Nationalism, and Attitudes toward Refugees" (with Leah Rosenzweig). Forthcoming, Comparative Political Studies.

"Self-Efficacy and Citizen Engagement in Development: Experimental Evidence from Tanzania" (with Evan Lieberman). Forthcoming, Journal of Experimental Political Science.

"Can Economic Assistance Shape Combatant Support in Wartime? Experimental Evidence from Afghanistan" (with Jason Lyall and Kosuke Imai). American Political Science Review, Volume: 114, Issue 1 (February 2020), pages 126-143.

Design and Analysis of the Randomized Response Technique” (with Graeme Blair and Kosuke Imai). Journal of the American Statistical Association, Volume: 110, Issue: 511 (Sept. 2015).

Yang-Yang Zhou

Assistant Professor

I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science. My pronouns are she/her. I study national identity, conflict, and development in the context of migration, particularly within the Global South.

A central focus of my research is to bring evidence to questions, and often misperceptions, within scholarly and public debates about the effects of migrants on host communities. A few questions that I'm thinking about these days: How does the presence of forcibly displaced migrants affect local development and public goods provision, conflict, and voting behavior? For minority citizens who share ethnic and cultural ties with migrants, what explains why they are sometimes inclusive and pro-migrant, but other times, they seek to differentiate themselves by excluding or "othering" migrants? And in contexts marked by anti-migrant prejudice and discrimination, can certain types of interventions — like prolonged intergroup contact between locals and migrants — work in reducing tensions? These projects span multiple regions, including East Africa, Central Asia, and South America.

In a second strand of research, I design and experimentally evaluate interventions in politically challenging contexts, alongside academic and non-governmental organization collaborators. This work includes the first individual-level randomized controlled trial of economic interventions at wartime, conducted in Afghanistan, and a series of experimental studies to understand the link between citizen self-efficacy and public goods participation in Tanzania. Because collecting data in these contexts often requires asking sensitive survey questions, I also develop statistical methods to protect respondent privacy and safety.

I received my Ph.D. in 2019 from the Department of Politics at Princeton University. Prior to Princeton, I was a social work case manager for the Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture, working with refugees and asylum-seekers from West and Central Africa, and South and Central Asia.

I am a CEGA faculty affiliate and an executive committee member for the UBC Centre for Migration Studies.

From 2021 through 2023, I will be on leave as a Harvard Academy Scholar. During this time, I will not be supervising new graduate students.

"Team and Nation: Sports, Nationalism, and Attitudes toward Refugees" (with Leah Rosenzweig). Forthcoming, Comparative Political Studies.

"Self-Efficacy and Citizen Engagement in Development: Experimental Evidence from Tanzania" (with Evan Lieberman). Forthcoming, Journal of Experimental Political Science.

"Can Economic Assistance Shape Combatant Support in Wartime? Experimental Evidence from Afghanistan" (with Jason Lyall and Kosuke Imai). American Political Science Review, Volume: 114, Issue 1 (February 2020), pages 126-143.

Design and Analysis of the Randomized Response Technique” (with Graeme Blair and Kosuke Imai). Journal of the American Statistical Association, Volume: 110, Issue: 511 (Sept. 2015).