Kevin O’Brien is the Alann P. Bedford Professor of Asian Studies and Professor of Political Science at UC-Berkeley. He is also the Director of Berkeley's Institute of East Asian Studies and the Walter and Elise Haas Professor of Asian Studies. He received a B.A. from Grinnell College and a Ph.D from Yale University, and taught at Ohio State before moving to Berkeley in 2000. His research focuses on contemporary Chinese politics. Among his publications are Reform Without Liberalization: China's National People's Congress and the Politics of Institutional Change, Rightful Resistance in Rural China (with Lianjiang Li), Engaging the Law in China: State, Society and Possibilities for Justice (co-edited with Neil Diamant and Stanley Lubman), and Popular Protest in China, as well as articles on legislative politics, local elections, fieldwork strategies, NGOs, migrant workers, implementation, policing, rural protest and village-level political reform. His most recent work centers on the Chinese state and theories of popular contention, particularly as concerns the policing of protest and types of repression that are neither "soft" nor "hard."
Research Expertise and Interest
social movements, Chinese politics, peasant politics