Researcher biography

Juan Zhang is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Sociology at the School of Social Science. She joined the School in November 2016. Prior to UQ, she was a Lecturer in Sociology at the University of New England, and a Research Fellow at the Asia Research Institute, National University of Singapore.

Juan received her PhD in Anthropology in 2011 at Macquarie University. Her doctoral research provided an ethnography on strategies of survival of communities living at the margins of China and Vietnam, especially how their cross-border interactions became a catalyst for local and regional social transformation. After PhD, Juan continued her research on borders and experiences of bordering, and co-edited a book The Art of Neighbouring: Making Relations Across China's Borders (2017, University of Amsterdam Press) that presented the different ways in which marginalized communities at national borders deploy the "art of neighbouring" and build new forms of solidarity and collaboration (see e-book).

Apart from borders, Juan's research expertise has been building around gender and transgression in relation to migration and the governance of mobility. Her research focused on the regime of control on gendered, migrant bodies, and developed theorization on exclusion as a deliberate outcome of transnational policy processes. Her work has been published by Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, Environment and Planning A, Current Sociology, Gender, Place and Culture, the China Journal, and International Development Planning Review.

Her latest project "Casino Mobilities" investigated the Asian casino boom and casino-led labour migration in Southeast Asia. It was the first academic enquiry that looked into the emerging casino industry in the Asian context, and its effect on migration, citizenship, regulation, and consumption. She is also the co-investigator of the Macau-based project "Casino and Development in Asia" which interrogates the politics of casino as development in different Asian societies.

Juan serves the editorial board of Transitions: Journal of Transient Migration.