Megan Robertson

Thesis title: An Ethnographic Study Exploring Bridewealth Negotiations Among the “New Generation” in Contemporary China


Doctor of Philosophy in Chinese Studies, The University of Edinburgh (2021-Present)

  • PhD research adopts ethnographic methods to explore how the “new generation” (those born after 1980) negotiate bridewealth in first-tier cities and how this practice reflects underlying processes in relation to gender, kinship hierarchies and individualization in contemporary  Chinese society

Master of Management Science in Public Policy and Management, Tsinghua University (2020)

  • Conducted qualitative interviews and quantitative study to analyse the challenges faced by consumers, business and government in adopting more environmentally friendly packaging solutions – final thesis was nominated for the Tsinghua Excellency Award

Master of Arts with Honours in Chinese Studies, The University of Edinburgh (2018)

  • First Class Degree with Distinction
  • Thesis compared Chinese language texts published during three different Communist Party leadership periods to analyse the way in which the Xibaipo Spirit narrative is constructed and renegotiated to provide legitimacy to the current regime

Responsibilities & affiliations

Part-time Consultant: Burson Cohn & Wolfe (Asia Pacific Corporate and Public Affairs, Beijing Office – Remote from Edinburgh) (2021-Present)            

  • Actively developed an in-depth knowledge of contemporary China issues to provide strategic counsel and support across the full spectrum of corporate and public affairs disciplines


  • Association for Asian Studies
  • British Association for Chinese Studies
  • British Postgraduate Network for Chinese Studies
  • European Association for Chinese Studies
  • Scottish China Education Network
  • Young China Watchers

Undergraduate teaching

Modern East Asian History B (ASST08043)


Current research interests

Ritual life; impact of policy and technology on social practice; family and kinship; gender; collective memory; nationalism and patriotic education

Current project grants

College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Research Award (2021-2024)
Sino-British Fellowship Trust Fieldwork Grant (2023)
School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures Fieldwork Grant (2023)

Invited speaker

Scotland China Education Network Youth Summit 2023          

Papers delivered

British Association for Chinese Studies Annual Conference Marriage Negotiation Panel: “Negotiating bridewealth in urban contemporary China” (2023)