I research contentious politics, civil society, repression, and citizenship with a focus on contemporary China.
Diana Fu is associate professor of political sciences at The University of Toronto and an affiliate of the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy Asian Institute. Her research examines popular contention, state power, civil society, and citizenship, with a focus on contemporary China. Her book “Mobilizing Without the Masses: Control and Contention in China,” (2018, Cambridge Studies in Contentious Politics Series) theorizes a counter-intuitive form of mobilization under authoritarian rule. It won the 2018 American Political Science Association’s Luebbert Prize for the best book in comparative politics, the 2019 International Studies Association’s best book award in international political sociology, and the 2019 Charles Tilly Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship Book Award from the American Sociological Association.
Her articles have appeared in Perspectives on Politics (2019), The China Journal (2018), Governance (2017, winner of the American Sociological Association’s Distinguished Scholarly Article Award in labor and labor movements), Comparative Political Studies (2017, co-winner of the best article published in CPS), and Modern China (2009).
She holds a D.Phil. in Politics and an M.Phil. In Development Studies with distinction from Oxford University, where she studied as a Rhodes Scholar. She was previously a Walter H. Shorenstein Postdoctoral Fellow at Stanford University and a Predoctoral Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Her research has been supported by the Harold Hyram Wingate Foundation and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.
She is currently one of twenty public intellectuals fellows at the National Committee on US-China Relations and serves as a national co-secretary of the Rhodes Scholarship for China. Her research and media interviews have appeared in Boston Review, CBC, Foreign Affairs, The Economist, The Financial Times, Reuters, and The New York Times, among others. She was a television host for a public education documentary series, “China Here and Now,” for TV Ontario. She enjoys Latin dance and creative writing.
TEaching & Service
Social Movements & Contentious Politics
Contention in Comparative Perspective
National Co-Secretary, The Rhodes Scholarship for China (with Mark Jia, Harvard Law)
China Research Partnership, Expert Member