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Xiaoling Shu


  • Ph.D., Sociology, University of Minnesota, 1997
  • M.S., Computer Science, University of Minnesota, 1997
  • M.A. coursework in Linguistics, BFSU, 1990-91
  • B.A., English & Economics, Beijing Foreign Studies University, 1990


Xiaoling Shu’s research focuses on the impacts of two of the most profound processes of our times – market transition and globalization – on gender inequalities (both in the labor market and within the family), subjective sense of well-being, and gender, family, marriage, and sexual behaviors and attitudes. Her analysis is both country specific (China and the United States) and cross-national. 舒晓灵研究这个时代意义深远的两个历史进程,市场化和全球化,对劳动力市场与家庭性别平等,主观幸福感和性别婚姻家庭性行为和态度的影响。既专注于中国和美国的单国研究又进行多国跨国比较。

Research Focus

Social Stratification, Gender, Quantitative Methods, Life Course, Social Demography, Comparative Studies, Computer Simulation, Knowledge Discovery & Data Mining

Expertise in statistical modeling

Confirmatory factor analysis, structural equation models, multilevel linear and nonlinear models, cross-classified fixed- & random-effect models (age-cohort-period cross classified fixed- & random-effect models), event history analysis (discrete-time event history analysis & Cox regression), and dynamic modeling (partial adjustment models).

M.S. in Computer Science specializing in Artificial Intelligence, knowledge discovery and data mining.

Current Projects

Knowledge Discovery in Social Sciences: A Data Mining Approach. University of California Press (under contract).

The book project is on data mining as a multi-disciplinary field at the confluence of statistics, computer science, machine learning, artificial intelligence, database technology, and pattern recognition. With the rise of big data and the enormous wealth of information and knowledge buried in the data mine, using data mining technologies to discover interesting, meaningful, and robust patterns has become increasingly important in the research process. The availability of huge amounts of data provides unprecedented opportunities for new discoveries, as well as challenges. Her book addresses these emerging opportunities and challenges.

Circuits of Communication and Gender Ideologies in the Age of Globalization: International Telecommunication Networks and Gender Attitudes across Countries (with George Barnett and Bob Faris)

Scholars have posed different hypotheses on the impact of global telecommunications on value orientations. Some argue that it will lead to a global convergence towards Western values, while others envision that both global influences and local adaptations will jointly form a hybridization or fusion of ideas and perspectives.  We analyze and characterize the global telecommunication network, and test a series of hypotheses on the relationship between location in this network and value convergence/divergence among nations. We test if the influences of the West, with high centrality in the global telecommunication networks, reach other countries throughout a global network or countries are embedded in a “localized” information diffusion network that are likely to share similar value orientations and mutually reinforce each other’s beliefs. We use data at two levels: between‐country telecommunications network data and individual‐level data (N = 70,000) from the World Value Survey.

Mapping Gender Ideologies Globally: Gender Attitudes in 47 Countries.

I analyzes cross-national variations in gender attitudes in 47 countries--beliefs about hierarchical gender equality and perspectives on horizontal separate spheres.  Using data from the World Value Survey of more than 70,000 individuals and a series of multilevel models, I map gender ideologies globally.  To unravel the influences of country characteristics, I examine three explanatory variables: national maternity leave policies and proportion of female chief wage earners, level of economic development and proportion of female primary wage earners.

Cohort Size, Historical Times and Life Chances: The Misfortune of Children of China's Cultural Revolution.

I examine the impact of dual societal transformations on individual life chances in China--the population explosion in 1949-1971 and the Cultural Revolution in 1966-1976.   I estimate the effects of cohort size and coming of age during the Cultural Revolution on individuals’ socioeconomic status and subjective evaluation of life.  I use a series of cross-classified age-period-cohort models to analyze national data of almost 12,000 individual from the 2003 and 2005 China General Social Surveys.

Selected Publications

Artificial Intelligence, Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining

Shu, Xiaoling and Jingjing Chen*. 2017. “Data-Driven Research and Causality in Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining.” Chinese Social Science Review--Journal of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (special issue on “The Frontiers of Social Science Research Methods”) (in Chinese). 舒晓灵,陈晶晶。2017. “重新认识“数据驱动”及因果关系:知识发现图谱中的数据挖掘研究”。中国社科院《中国社会科学评价》特刊“社会科学研究方法前沿”。

Shu, Xiaoling and Bowen Zhu*. 2016. “Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining in the Era of Big Data.” Journal of Guizhou Normal University, 203(6):49-53(in Chinese).

Shu, Xiaoling. 2003. “Artificial Intelligence” in The Sage Encyclopedia of Social Science Research Methods (M. Lewis-Beck, A. Bryman, and T. F. Liao eds.). Sage Publications.

Gender Ideology, Gender Inequalities in China and United States

Shu, Xiaoling and Kelsey D. Meagher*. Forthcoming. “Beyond the Stalled Gender Revolution: Historical and Cohort Dynamics in Gender Attitudes from 1977-2016.” Social Forces

Shu, Xiaoling, Yifei Zhu*, and Zhanxin Zhang. 2013. “Patriarchy, Resources and Specialization: Marital Decision-Making Power in Urban China.”  Journal of Family Issues 34(7):885-917.

Shu, Xiaoling and Yifei Zhu*. 2012. “Uneven Transitions: Cohort- and Period-based Changes in Gender Attitudes in China: 1995-2007.” Social Science Research 41(5):1100-1115. 

.Shu, Xiaoling, Yifei Zhu*, and Zhanxin Zhang. 2007. “Global Economy and Gender Inequalities: The Case of the Chinese Urban Labor Market.Social Science Quarterly 88(5):1307-32 (special issue on Women in Global Society).

Shu, Xiaoling. 2005. "Market Transition and Gender Segregation in Urban China." Social Science Quarterly 86(5):1299-1323 (special issue on Income/Poverty/Opportunity).

Shu, Xiaoling. 2004. "Education and Gender Egalitarianism: The Case of China." Sociology of Education 77(4):311-336.

Shu, Xiaoling and Yanjie Bian. 2003. "Market Transition and Gender Gap in Earnings in Urban China." Social Forces 81(4):1107-1145.

Shu, Xiaoling and Yanjie Bian. 2002. "Intercity Variation in Gender Inequalities in China." Research in Social Stratification and Mobility 19:267-307 (Special issue on The Future of Market Transition).

Shu, Xiaoling and Margaret Mooney Marini. 1998. "Gender-Related Change in Occupational Aspirations."   Sociology of Education 71(1):44-68.

Quality of Life and Stratification

Shu, Xiaoling and Yifei Zhu*. 2009. “The Quality of Life in China.” Social Indicators Research 92:191-225 (Special issue on The Quality of Life in Confucian Asia).

Shu, Xiaoling and Yifei Zhu*. 2014. “China, Quality of Life” pp 822-826 in Encyclopedia of Quality of Life and Well-Being Research (Alex C. Michalos ed.). Springer.

Shu, Xiaoling and Margaret Mooney Marini. 2008. “Coming of Age in Changing Times: Occupational Aspirations of American Youth in 1966-80.” Research in Social Stratification and Mobility 26(1):29-55

Bian Yanjie, Xiaoling Shu, and John R. Logan. 2001. "Communist Party Membership and Regime Dynamics in China." Social Forces 79(3):805-841.

             Reprinted in Yanjie Bian, Xiaogang Wu, and Lulu Li (editors). 2008.  Social Stratification and Mobility: Overseas Researchers’ New Advancements and Analyses of China Beijing: Renmin University of China. 边燕杰,吴晓刚,李路路主编 《市场转型与社会分层与流动: 海外学者对中国分析的新进展》   北京: 中国人民大学出版社

Shu, Xiaoling, Pi-Ling Fan, Xiaoli Li, and Margaret Mooney Marini. 1996. “Characterizing Occupations with Data from the Dictionary of Occupational Titles.Social Science Research 25(2):149-173.

* Graduate Student Coauthors



Knowledge Discovery in Social Sciences: A Data Mining Approach (Spr'18).

Social Transformation and Life-course Dynamics: Theories and Methods (Win’13, Fall’14).

Advanced Topics in Quantitative Methods: Structural Equation Models (Win’02, Win’08, Win’12).

Advanced Topics in Quantitative Methods: Multilevel Models (Spr’02, Spr’05, Spr’08, Spr’12, Fall’13, Fall’15, Fall’17).

Market Transition and Social Stratification in China (Spr'98, Spr'04).


Social Stratification (Win’99, Win’01, Spr’03, Spr’04, Fall’05, Win’09, Win’10, Fall’12, Fall’13).

Intermediate Social Statistics (Win’98, Spr’99, Win’00, Spr’01, Fall’02, Win’04, Spr’05, Win’06, Spr’07, Spr’08, Win’09, Fall’10, Spr’12, Fall’12, Fall’14, Fall’16).

Introductory Social Statistics (Spr‘98, Spr’99, Spr’01, Spr ‘03, Win’04, Fall’05, Spr’09, Fall’10, Spr’11, Win’13, Win’14, Spr’15, Fall’15, Spr’16, Fall’16, Win’17).

Social Stratification in China (Spr’98, Winr’01, Fall’02, Fall’04, Win’08, Fall’10).

The Emerging Middle Classes in China (Win’02, Win’06, Spr’10, Spr’11).


Faculty Career Development Award, Academic Affairs, 2017, 2011, 1999.

Grant for Regional Faculty Groups, Global Affairs, 2017: PI.

Fellow, Institute for Social Sciences, 2017.

Chinese National Science Foundation Grant, 2016: Co-PI..

Undergraduate Instructional Improvement Program Grant,  2007, 1998, PI.

MacArthur Fellowship, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, 1991-95.