Canglong Wang

Research activity per year

Personal profile

Scholarly biography

I am now a Lecturer in Sociology at the School of Humanities and Social Science at the University of Brighton. I received my PhD in Sociology from the University of Edinburgh and have previously taught at the University of Hull, Birkbeck, University of London, the University of Edinburgh, East China Normal University, and Xiamen University.


Currently, I serve as the Joint Course Leader for the Criminology and Sociology program. During my tenure at the University of Hull, I assumed the role of Director for the BA (Hons) in Chinese Studies, acted as a module coordinator for several courses, and provided mentorship for new staff and visiting scholars.


My research contributions are recognized in leading academic journals and edited volumes. I have authored significant works, including “The Rise of Confucian Citizens in China: Theoretical Reflections and Empirical Explorations” (Routledge, 2023) and “Cultivating the Confucian Individual: The Confucian Education Revival in China” (Palgrave Macmillan, 2023).


Additionally, I have had the privilege of serving as the guest editor for special issues in three distinguished journals, significantly contributing to the discourse on Chinese citizenship and education. These include:


I have also been involved in noteworthy projects, such as being the Principal Investigator (PI) for an international research project funded by China’s State Key Laboratory of Subtropical Building Science, focusing on “Cultivating Confucian Citizens through Heritage Education Space Restoration in Contemporary China: An Interdisciplinary Study of Social Exclusion and Cultural Identity,” with a funding of £24,000. Furthermore, I co-investigated a project on the challenges and opportunities for Early Career Researchers in the UK, funded by a collaboration grant from the Business and Management Research Institute at the University of Bedfordshire.


I can be contacted via email at or for further discussions or collaborations.


Research interests

  • Race/ethnicity studies (esp. Chinese ethnic identity and transnational migration in the context of “tradition” revival)
  • Mixed research methods
  • Critical studies of Chinese citizenship
  • Education and social justice (with a focus on critical pedagogy and civic activism in Chinese “tradition” education)
  • Grassroots education movement and Chinese civil society
  • Gender studies (esp. Chinese professional womanhood)
  • Social theory (esp. Michel Foucault, reflexive modernity, and Chinese sociological theories)
  • Comparative history of sociology (focusing on China and the UK)


My academic pursuits are deeply embedded in the intersection of sociology and Chinese studies, with a specialization in the nuanced facets of race and ethnicity. I am particularly drawn to the investigation of Chinese ethnic identity and the intricate patterns of transnational migration, as well as the renaissance of traditional cultural practices within these communities. The methodological approach I adopt is pluralistic, employing qualitative and quantitative research strategies to provide a comprehensive and robust analysis of sociocultural phenomena.


Central to my scholarly endeavors is the critical examination of Chinese citizenship. This inquiry critically intersects with issues of education and social justice, where I focus on the role of critical pedagogy and civic activism in the revival of Confucian education in China. This line of inquiry naturally extends to an examination of grassroots educational movements, which I scrutinize for their capacity to influence and reform Chinese civil society.


Furthermore, gender studies constitute a vital strand of my research, with particular attention to the construction and experience of professional womanhood within the Chinese context. This interest is couched within a broader engagement with social theory, drawing upon the insights of thinkers such as Michel Foucault and the concept of reflexive modernity, alongside indigenous Chinese sociological theories.


Lastly, my academic exploration includes a comparative historical analysis of sociological traditions, with a focus on the intellectual dialogues between China and Britain. This comparative aspect aims to shed light on the divergent sociological pathways and the contextual specificity that shape sociological scholarship across different sociocultural landscapes.


Approach to teaching

My teaching expertise spans a variety of sociological and criminological subjects, which is grounded in an array of courses I've coordinated and taught. I have jointly coordinated the module "Introduction to Researching Social and Cultural Life" (SS414) for the 2023-2024 academic year, providing students with foundational research skills. In the same period, I also took the lead in "Sociology and the Life Course" (SS520), exploring the social construction of life stages from birth to old age. Looking ahead, I am set to coordinate "Global Cultures" (SS559) for the 2024-2025 academic year, delving into the complexities of cultural exchanges in a globalized world.


Beyond these roles, my teaching portfolio includes modules like "Sociological Imaginations" (SS424), "Social and Cultural Research Practice" (SS530), "Policing and Society" (SS541), and a broad spectrum of specialized areas including cultural sociology, sociology of education, contemporary sociological theory, migration and mobility, identity, gender and ethnicity, East Asian popular culture, and contemporary Western studies of China.


In the area of supervision and pastoral care, I have provided guidance as the principal supervisor for both BA and MA dissertations and as a Personal Academic Tutor for undergraduate students. My role in supervising PhD researchers has allowed me to extend my support and expertise to high-level academic inquiries within my field.


Regarding my professional development, I have obtained a Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice (PCAP) from the University of Hull. This qualification further affirms my commitment to educational excellence, as recognized by the Higher Education Academy with my Fellow designation (FHEA).


My teaching philosophy not only focuses on imparting knowledge but also on nurturing critical thinking, cultural awareness, and lifelong learning in my students.


Supervisory Interests

As a dedicated academic within the field of sociology and the broader social science, I am always enthusiastic about guiding doctoral projects and currently can take in 3-4 PhD candidates. I am open to supervising doctoral research that pertains to the following areas:


  • Race/ethnicity studies
  • Citizenship studies
  • Transnational migration
  • Sociology of education
  • Cultural/political sociology
  • Gender studies
  • Sociological theories
  • China/East Asia studies


Beyond these specified areas, I am open to considering other potential research initiatives. Prospective candidates are encouraged to reach out via email to discuss their research projects. If my areas of research resonate with your scholarly interests, I urge you not to hesitate and get in touch with me to explore the vibrant possibilities of advancing your academic journey under my supervision.


Knowledge exchange

Professional Membership: 

  • British Sociological Association (BSA)
  • Chinese Sociological Association (CSA)
  • British Association for Chinese Studies (BACS)
  • Chinese Educational Research Association (CERA)


Education/Academic qualification

Fellow of Higher Education Academy (FHEA)

PhD, University of Edinburgh

Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice (PCAP)


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