Centre for Knowledge, Innovation, Technology and Enterprise

Staff Profile

Dr Wubiao Zhou

Senior Lecturer


Wubiao Zhou is a Senior Lecturer (equivalent to an Associate Professor in the U.S. system) in the Newcastle University Business School (NUBS) at the Newcastle University, United Kingdom. He obtained a Ph.D. in Sociology (concentrations: economic sociology, organizations, quantitative methods, social inequality) from Cornell University, and M.A. and B.A., both in Sociology, from Peking University, China. Before joining NUBS in January 2017, he taught at the Department of Sociology in the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Adopting quantitative and analytic methods, Wubiao is working in the research areas of economic sociology, entrepreneurship (including international entrepreneurship), internationalization of emerging market enterprises, and organizations, with a focus on emerging and transition economies. He has published single-authored papers in a number of entrepreneurship and development studies journals such as Journal of Business Venturing (2013, 2017), Small Business Economics, World Development, Management and Organization Review, and Entrepreneurship and Regional Development. Overall, these publications demonstrate how formal institutions (e.g., property rights institutions and government deregulation) and informal institutions/strategies (e.g., political connections, corporate political activities, and research partnerships) affect entrepreneurship and firm innovation, and how formal and informal institutions interplay, in emerging and transition economies. He has also received various best paper awards such as the Emerald Citations of Excellence Award from the Emerald Group Publishing, Global Development Award (finalist) from the Global Development Network (GDN), and Best Doctoral Student Award from the Academy of Management. His research was funded by external agencies such as Research Grants Council of Hong Kong and Natural Science Foundation of China.     

Wubiao has extensive experience in teaching and in supervising students (at all levels). The courses that he has taught previously include economic sociology, complex organisation, entrepreneurship, social inequality, economic reform and social impacts in China, political foundations of China's economic reforms, and quantitative methods courses (at both undergraduate and graduate levels). Currently, he is teaching both undergraduate- and graduate-level courses, including quantitative methods, research methods, emerging economies, and international entrepreneurship. In addition, he has supervised both doctoral and research master's (MPhil) students, as well as numerous undergraduate honour's theses.

Wubiao has provided a number of services to both the schools he has worked and the wider academic community. He is a frequent reviewer for academic journals such as Journal of Business Venturing, Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Small Business Economics, Journal of Management, American Sociological Review, etc. Currently, he serves as an Editorial Review Board member for Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice.

Student Feedback, Guidance and Consultation Hours: Friday, 1pm to 3pm; Wednesday, 1pm to 2pm.   


Wubiao Zhou's research interests fall under the general theme of understanding the interplay between entrepreneurs/firms, formal institutions, and social structure in emerging and transition economies. His current research projects aim to answer two interrelated larger questions:

(1) How can entrepreneurs/firms in emerging markets resolve institutional deficiency to engage in productive investment/activities, thus achieving rapid growth and even going global?

(2) How can formal institutions develop in emerging markets?

To answer the first question, with recent large-scale survey data, as well as longitudinal data, Wubiao Zhou is investigating the role of various types of social capital, as well as political and cultural capital, in facilitating or constraining productive firm activities both domestically and internationally (e.g., overseas acquisition and investment).

To answer the second question, he is starting to assemble data on the interplay between the state, social organizations (e.g., business associations), and enterprises in China - the largest emerging economy in the world.    




Undergraduate Courses:

BUS1014: Quantitative methods for international business management

BUS2028: Research methods (quantitative sessions)

BUS3039/3060: International entrepreneurship

MBA Courses:

NBS8495: Emerging economies: Challenges and opportunities

NBS8520: MBA Dissertation (quantitative sessions)


  • Zhou W. Institutional environment, public-private hybrid forms, and entrepreneurial reinvestment in a transition economy. Journal of Business Venturing 2017, 32(2), 197-214.
  • Zhou W. Property Rights, Deregulation, and Entrepreneurial Development in a Transition Economy. Management and Organization Review 2017, epub ahead of print.
  • Zhou W. Regional institutional development, political connections, and entrepreneurial performance in China’s transition economy. Small Business Economics 2014, 43(1), 161-181.
  • Zhou W. Political connections and entrepreneurial investment: Evidence from China's transition economy. Journal of Business Venturing 2013, 28(2), 299-315.
  • Zhou W. "Regulatory Models and Entrepreneurial Growth: Evidence from China’s Transition Economy,". Strategic Change 2012, 21, 119-142.
  • Zhou W. “Determinants and Effects of Research Partnerships in China’s Emerging Market,”. Contemporary Economic Policy 2012, 30, 129-147. Winner of the Emerald Citations of Excellence Award for 2015.
  • Zhou W. “Political Connections and Entrepreneurial Finance in an Emerging Market: The China Case,”. In: Alex Maritz, ed. Regional Frontiers of Entrepreneurship Research. Swinburne University of Technology Press, 2011, pp.1105-1119.
  • Zhou W. “Regional Deregulation and Entrepreneurial Growth in China’s Transition Economy,”. Entrepreneurship and Regional Development 2011, 23, 853-876. (ABS ranking:3).
  • Zhou W. “The Role of the State in Making a National Market: The Evolution of the Grain Market in China,”. China Agricultural Economic Review 2010, 2, 276-297.
  • Zhou W. “Bank Financing in China’s Private Sector: The Payoffs of Political Capital,”. World Development 2009, 37, 787-799. Winner of the Global Development Paper Award, Finalist in 2007. (ABS ranking: 3).
  • Zhou W. “Financing China's Entrepreneurs,”. In: Natalia Dinello & Shaoguang Wang, ed. China, India and Beyond: Drivers and Limitations of Development. Edward Elgar Publishing, 2009, pp.196 – 221.
  • Zhou W. “R&D Collaboration and Innovation in China’s Emerging Market,”. In: Tan Teng Kee, ed. Proceedings of Chinese Enterprise Research 2007. World Scientific Publishing, 2008, pp.283-312.
  • Zhou W. “A Resource dependence Perspective on Bank Financing in China’s Private Sector,”. In: Tan Teng Kee, ed. Proceedings of Chinese Enterprise in Post-WTO Era. World Scientific Publishing, 2007, pp.129-158.
  • Zhou W. “Review of Changing Lanes in China: Foreign Direct Investment, Local Governments, and Auto Sector Development (Cambridge University Press 2006), by Eric Thun,”. Administrative Science Quarterly 2007, 52, 161-164.