Yi Zhao

Young short haired man

Yi Zhao is the Associate Director of Research for the Civic Life of Cities Lab at the Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society. At the Lab, Yi works with the faculty director in planning and implementing research agendas and supporting the research team to advance the Lab’s research programs and paper-writing projects. Yi holds a PhD in sociology from the University of Arizona and an MPA from Cornell University. In his research, Yi is developing a “General but Context Sensitive” approach for studying nonprofit sectors and civil societies from a global and comparative perspective, and this line of work has been published in Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly, a leading nonprofit journal. Yi is also working on several research projects to understand organizational and sociological mechanisms underlying the challenges facing social innovations such as social entrepreneurship and impact investing in the creation of broader social impacts. Yi is the recipient of the 2019 Raymond V. Bowers Award for Outstanding Graduate Student Paper and the 2020 William K. Bunis Graduate Student Teaching Instructor Award in sociology at the University of Arizona. In 2008, he proudly served as a volunteer for the Summer Olympics in Beijing.