Prof. Dr. Sarah Eaton

Professor for Modern Chinese Society & Economy, Director Center for Modern East Asian Studies (CeMEAS) (parental leave 01.04.-30.06.19)

Prof. Dr. Sarah Eaton
  • Focus
    contemporary political economy | economic ideology | environmental politics | green growth | State capitalism | state-owned enterprises
  • (0551) 39-21281
  • Room
    KWZ 0.705
  • Consultation hours
    WiSe 2018/2019: Wednesday 9am-10am

Sarah Eaton is the Professor of Modern Chinese Society and Economy in the Institute for Sociology and the East Asian Studies Department. Her primary research and teaching interests lie in contemporary Chinese political economy. Before coming to Göttingen, she was an Associate Professor at the University of Oxford’s School of Interdisciplinary Studies and, prior to that, an Assistant Professor at the University of Waterloo.

The results of a major project on industrial policy and state enterprise in China have recently been published as a book with Cambridge University Press. Her related works and studies of environmental governance in China have appeared in a number of leading area studies and disciplinary journals including The China Quarterly, The China Journal and Review of International Political Economy.

Curriculum Vitae

Academic Positions

07/14 – : Georg-August Universität Göttingen

  • Faculty of Social Sciences & Department of East Asian Studies
  • Professor of Modern Chinese Society & Economy
  • Director, Center for Modern East Asian Studies (09/2016-)
  • (maternity leave from 07/2015 to 07/2016)

09/13-06/14: University of Oxford

  • School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies
  • University Lecturer/ Associate Professor in the Political Economy of China

09/12-09/13: University of Waterloo

  • Department of Political Science Assistant Professor (tenure-track)

10/11-08/12: University of Oxford

  • China Centre SSHRC (Canada) Post-Doctoral Fellow


09/04-09/11: University of Toronto, Department of Political Science

  • Ph.D.
  • Dissertation: “China’s State Capitalist Turn: Political Economy of the Advancing State

09/09-07/10: Renmin University of China, Institute of International Politics (Beijing)

  • Visiting Scholar

01/08-07/09: Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS), Institute of World Economics and Politics (Beijing)

  • Visiting Scholar

06/07-01/08: The Inter-University Program (IUP) at Tsinghua University (Beijing)

  • Student
  • Advanced Chinese Language Studies administered by the University of California, Berkeley

09/02-09/04: McMaster University

  • M.A in Political Science

09/97-09/01: Mount Allison University

  • Bachelor of Arts

Ph.D Supervision

  • Carolin Kautz (2016-) Anti-Corruption Campaigns in the People’s Republic of China
  • Elena Lichtenthaler (2016-) China’s International Food Policy

Stand November 2016



  • The Advance of the State in Contemporary China: State-Market Relations in the Reform Era, (Cambridge University Press, 2016)

Refereed Journal Articles

  • “Central Protectionism in China: The ‘Central SOE Problem’ in Environmental Governance” with Genia Kostka The China Quarterly (forthcoming)
  • “Authoritarian Environmentalism Undermined? Leaders’ Time Horizons and Consequences for Environmental Policy Implementation” with Genia Kostka The China Quarterly Vol. 218, June 2014.
  • “The Gradual Encroachment of an Idea: Large Enterprise Groups in China” Copenhagen Journal of Asian Studies, Vol. 31 No. 2, December 2013.
  • “Political Economy of the Advancing State: The Case of China’s Airlines Reform” The China Journal Issue 69, January 2013.
  • “A Principal-Agent Analysis of China’s Sovereign Wealth System: Byzantine by Design” with Zhang Ming in Review of International Political Economy Vol. 17 No. 3, August 2010.
  • “Is ASEAN Powerful? Neorealist versus Constructivist Approaches to Power in Southeast Asia” with Richard Stubbs The Pacific Review Vol. 19 No. 2, June 2006.
  • “Crisis and the Consolidation of Accounting Standards: Enron, the IASB and America” Business and Politics Vol. 7 No. 3, December 2005.

Book Chapters

  • “Does Cadre Turnover Help or Hinder China’s Green Rise? Evidence from Shanxi Province” with Genia Kostka in Chinese Environmental Policy: Dynamics, Challenges, and Prospects in a Changing Society, Ren Bingqiang and Shou Shuisheng, eds. Palgrave Macmillan, 2013.
  • “Globalization, Autonomy and Global Institutions: Accounting for Accounting” with Tony Porter in Global Ordering: Institutions and Autonomy in a Changing World, Louis Pauly and William D. Coleman, eds. University of British Columbia Press, 2008.
  • “Is ASEAN Powerful? Neorealist versus Constructivist Approaches to Power in Southeast Asia” [reprint] with Richard Stubbs in Theorizing Southeast Asian Relations: Emerging Debates, Amitav Acharya and Richard Stubbs, eds. London: Routledge, 2008.
  • “Introduction: Responses to Globalization” with Richard Stubbs Political Economy and the Changing Global Order, 3rd ed, Richard Stubbs, ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005.

Stand November 2016