Yizhang Zhao


Social Stratification of Health and Well-Being in a Transitional Society – Evidence from Contemporary China.

PhD summary

This project aims to explore how different dimensions of social inequality would affect people’s health and subjective wellbeing, and how the influence would change over time alongside rapid social transformation. With this perspective, my current research examines both influences from life-course changes at the individual level and impacts from external social changes at the societal level. To address these questions, I use contemporary Chinese society as an example, which features mixed institutional arrangement and witnesses rapid urbanisation and marketisation processes in the recent decades. Empirical analysis is based on large survey data, including both cross-sectional and longitudinal datasets in contemporary Chinese society.


September 2014 – September 2017


Samual Chan Alumni Scholarship
Oversea Research Scholarship


My prior qualifications include an MSc in Social Research Methods and Statistics from the University of Manchester in 2014, an MA in Sociology from Tsinghua University in 2013, and a BA in Sociology from Renmin University in 2011. My research interests cover social stratification and mobility, internal migration, health and well-being, life-course analysis and statistical methods.


  • Zhao, Y., Heath, A., & Shryane, N. Limited Gains: Chinese Rural-to-Urban Migrants’ Upward Social Mobility and Subjective Wellbeing. Working paper.
  • Zhao, Y., & Li, Y. Intergenerational Social Mobility and Wellbeing in China. Working paper.
  • Li, Y., & Zhao, Y. (2017). Double Disadvantages: A Study of Ethnic and Hukou Effects on Class Mobility in China (1996–2014). Social Inclusion, 5(1), 5-19.
  • Zhao, Y., Li, Y., Heath, A., & Shryane, N. (2017). Inter- and Intra-Generational Social Mobility Effects on Subjective Well-Being - Evidence from Mainland China. Research in Social Stratification and Mobility, 48, 54-66.


  • Prof. Yaojun Li
  • Prof. Anthony Heath
  • Dr. Nick Shryane

Contact details

Office: G45, Humanities Bridgeford Street Building
Email: yizhang.zhao@manchester.ac.uk