Hi there! Welcome!

My name is Pengfei Zhao and I am a qualitative research methodologist with broad interests in contemporary philosophic, social, and methodological theories. I graduated from Indiana University’s Inquiry Methodology Program with a doctoral degree in qualitative research methodology and a minor in social theory studies. I love conducting qualitative research because I have always been interested in understanding the diverging life paths and the varying lived experiences. I enjoy writing qualitative works, which makes me feel my life converges with others’ and together we are moving forward to a shared world of mutual understanding and inclusion.

I ground my methodology work in long-term, multi-method empirical studies conducted in China and in the United States. One of such research commitments examines the coming of age experience of rural Chinese youth during and right after the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976). Based on this project, I am completing a book manuscript entitled Changing Fate: The Cultural Revolution’s Rural Youth in Transition to Post-Mao China. Besides, I am also engaged in empirical studies on student-centered teaching and learning, comprehensive sexuality education, and anti-bully intervention in schools.

My methodological writing addresses key issues in the field of qualitative inquiry such as validity, language and representation, qualitative data analysis software, and inference-making. In particular, I draw from critical theory, pragmatism, post-colonialism, and new materialism to formulate a praxis- and social justice- oriented research methodology. Together with three colleagues, I am writing a research method textbook entitled Making Sense of Social Research Methodology: A Student- and Practitioner-Centered Approach, which is scheduled to be published by Sage Press in 2020.