Deborah Davis

Deborah Davis's picture
Professor Emerita of Sociology
Ph.D., Sociology, Boston University, 1979
M.A., East Asian Studies, Harvard University, 1970
B.A., Political Science, Wellesley College, 1967
Areas of Interest: 
Comparative and Historical Sociology; Economic Sociology and Organizations; Family/Gender/Sexuality; Global, Regional and Transnational Sociology; Methods
Mailing Address: 493 College Street, Room 301, New Haven, CT 06520
Phone number: 


Deborah Davis joined the Yale Department of Sociology as a lecturer in 1978 and retired as Full Professor in 2018 during which time she held fellowships from the National Academy of Sciences, National Institute of Aging, Luce Foundation, Templeton Foundation, Ford Foundation, and the ACLS. During her forty years on the Yale faculty Davis served as Director of Academic Programs at the Yale Center for Study of  Globalization , Chair of the Department of Sociology,  and Co-Chair of the Women Faculty Forum.   Since 2016 she has been a Distinguished Visiting Professor at Fudan University in Shanghai and on faculty of the Schwarzman College at Tsinghua University. She also serves on the editorial boards of The China Quarterly and The China Review  and is a Trustee of the Yale China Association. Currently she is working with Professors Pierre Landry (CUHK) and Chen Juan (HKPU) on the social consequence of uneven urbanization for residents of  Chinese cities and with Professor Tian Feng at Fudan University on marriage and housing arrangements among the 80后 generation in Shanghai.

Audio Visual


  • (2014) Re-Placing the Rural Urban Binary. Tan Chin Tuan lectureship, Yale-NUS College.
  • (2011) The MacMillan Report: Marriage and Divorce Trends in China. Professor Davis organized a workshop at Hong Kong University as part of a larger project on post-socialist marriage and sexuality. During this online interview, she talks about the changing trends of marriage and divorce in China.
  • (2009) Great Issues Forum: Power of Education. Held at the CUNY Graduate Center, this forum features James J. Duderstadt, President Emeritus and University Professor of Science and Engineering at the University of Michigan; Deborah Davis, former director of the Yale Center for the Study of Globalization; Enrique Dussel Peters, Professor of Economics at the National Autonomous University of Mexico; and Yu Lizhong, President of East China Normal University. William Kelly, President of the Graduate Center, moderates.

Recent Publications