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About X. Alvin Yang

The Short Version:


I'm a multidisciplinary scholar, musician, vegetarian, polyglot and world citizen. I'm idealistic and romantic in vision because I'm an artist at heart, but I'm also empirically grounded because of my scientific training. I try to push knowledge frontiers of and tackle the challenges in the global economy, international relations, global migration, sociology of knowledge and sustainable development. I am trained in economics, political science, music and arts. To learn more about the world and myself, in the past decade, I studied in six countries and travelled to almost 30 countries across three continents. I play drumset, guitar and bass at the professional level. I speak English, French, Chinese (Mandarin and Cantonese) and German. 


The Long Version:


Different people have known me in different ways during different periods of my life. Some people know the academic Alvin as a scholar of international relations and the global economy who thinks clearly,  makes rational and persuasive arguments and conducts both theoretical and empirical works.


Some know the younger Alvin as the musician, the artist, the romantic. He was a professional musician before he became an academic. He composes and plays the drumset, guitar and bass and is versatile in diverse musical styles, including pop, jazz, funk, blues and classical music. ​Music, arts and architecture are crucial to me because they reflect the soul and spirit of a place, a person, or a people.


Some know Alvin as a global trotter and a world citizen. In the past decade, he has been to almost 30 countries, mostly Europe, East Asia and North America.  He plans to explore more places beyond these three regions in the near future. 



Some remember him as a comedian who makes good jokes, as an entrepreneur, or as a vegetarian


Some know Alvin as a polyglot. He speaks English, French, German and Chinese (Mandarin and Cantonese). He writes mostly in English but reads and occasionally writes in Chinese, French and German. In addition, he has some knowledge of Spanish, Swedish, Italian, Japanese and Danish. He believes learning, thinking and speaking in a new language helps one to enter a whole new world.

Although he may be known in multiple ways, they are all him. This is the complexity of being a human.

Academically, he is pursuing Dr. rer. pol. (PhD degree in political science and economics) at Universität Kassel, Germany. In March 2024, he successfully defended his PhD dissertation, The Evolution of Chinese IR Theories: Transnational and Transcultural Knowledge Innovation, Production and Diffusion. 



In short, his PhD dissertation examines innovation, production and diffusion of knowledge of international relations. He especially focuses on the emerging Chinese international relations (IR) theories in the global competition for knowledge in social sciences. He aims to develop a new theory to shed light on the current (changing?) global order where there are ongoing tensions among globalization, regional integration and the resurgence of nationalism.

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