Diana Fu

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SS 3012

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Area Group(s)

  • Comparative Politics
  • Development Studies


  • B.A. (Hons.), University of Minnesota
  • M.Phil., University of Oxford
  • D. Phil., University of Oxford

Diana Fu

Assistant Professor


Diana Fu is an assistant professor of political science at The University of Toronto and an affiliate of the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy’s 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 and the 2019 International Studies Association’s best book award from the International Political Sociology section.
Her articles have appeared in Perspectives on Politics (2019), The China Journal (2018), Governance (2017), 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 a Public Intellectuals Fellow at the National Committee on US-China Relations. Her research and media interviews have appeared in Boston Review, CBC, The Economist, The Financial Times, Reuters, and The New York Times, among others. She enjoys Latin dance and creative writing.

Research Interests

  • Contentious Politics and Social Movements
  • Chinese Politics
  • International Development
  • Labour and Gender
  • Political Ethnography

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