Biography

I studied Sociology at Renmin University of China before I worked in China's post and telecom industry for a number of years. I then studied at Keele University for both my MA and PhD degrees in HRM and Industrial Relations before I was employed as a lecturer at Middlesex University in London. In 2010 I returned to Keele Management School as a lecturer in HRM.

I am an Academic Associate Member of CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development), Fellow of Higher Education Academy, and Visiting Professor at Capital University of Economics and Business, China.

Research and scholarships

My main research interests include performance management in health services, work-life balance, employee misbehaviour, entrepreneurship, leadership, international strategic HRM, the emerging trade unionism and labour movement in China. Currently I am studying the role of Chinese trade union organisations on collective wage consultation and strikes, alternative labour dispute resolution mechanisms, and the impact of China’s Belt and Road Initiative on the challenges of developing countries’ labour market, income and employment.

I was the principal investigator of a Leverhulme project ‘Collective pay determination and the changing labour relations in globalised China’ (2015-17, £105,873), which looks at the recent development of wage consultation, trade unions and labour relations in foreign invested firms in a number of regions in China. This large scale, international, interdisciplinary research is collaborated by a team of academics based in four universities: Keele University (UK), SOAS University of London (UK), Capital University of Economics and Business (China), and Shandong University of Finance and Economics (China). Click here for full details of the project

Currently I am the principal investigator of the GCRF (Research England Global Challenges Research Fund) project “Foreign investment, labour market and employment relations: the challenges of Kenya’s sustainable development”, with a budget of £19,940. Co-investigators include Professor Qihai Huang (Keele), Dr Mwenda Kailemia (Keele), Dr George Kosimbei (Kenyatta University, Kenya), and Professor Li Xinchun (Sun Yat-Sen University, China). The project started in September 2018.

I am a member of the editorial boards of

  • The International Journal of Human Resource Management
  • Asia Pacific Journal of Human Resources. 


My current PhD students are:

  • Zhonglin Liu (September 2016 -): Strategic integration, HRM, and cross-border mergers and acquisitions: a case study of a multinational corporation in China.
  • Mengyi Xu (September 2015 -): Work-life balance in China: perspectives of urban female white collar employees.


Media engagement:

Cao, X. (2018) BRICS summit in Johannesburg: here’s what the five countries are looking for. Conversation, 24 July 2018 

Teaching

  • Undergraduate Course Director (HRM)
  • Year 2 Employee Resourcing
  • Year 3 Pay and Performance
  • MA Employment Relations and Reward

Further information

Research groups:

Selected Publications

  • Cao X. 2018. Book review: Eli Fridman, Zhongjin Li and Hao Ren (eds), China on strike: Narratives of workers’ resistance. Work, Employment & Society. doi> full text>
  • Cao X and Meng Q. 2017. Dockworkers’ resistance and union reform within China’s globalised seaport industry. In Chinese Labour in the Global Economy Capitalist Exploitation and Strategies of Resistance. Routledge.
  • Cao X and Meng Q. 2017. Dockworkers’ resistance and union reform within China’s globalised seaport industry. Globalizations, vol. 14(2), 272-284. doi> link> full text>
  • Cao X. 2016. Book Review China at Work: A labour process perspective on the transformation of work and employment in China. doi> full text>
  • Cao X. 2015. Organizational Misbehavior and Management Control in China’s Public Hospitals: Doctors’ Red Packets. Frontiers of Business Research in China, vol. 9(1), 110-134. doi> full text>

Full Publications List show

Journal Articles

  • Cao X. 2018. Book review: Eli Fridman, Zhongjin Li and Hao Ren (eds), China on strike: Narratives of workers’ resistance. Work, Employment & Society. doi> full text>
  • Cao X and Meng Q. 2017. Dockworkers’ resistance and union reform within China’s globalised seaport industry. Globalizations, vol. 14(2), 272-284. doi> link> full text>
  • Cao X. 2015. Organizational Misbehavior and Management Control in China’s Public Hospitals: Doctors’ Red Packets. Frontiers of Business Research in China, vol. 9(1), 110-134. doi> full text>
  • Lyddon D, Cao X, Meng Q, Lu J. 2015. A strike of ‘unorganised’ workers in a Chinese car factory: the Nanhai Honda events of 2010. Industrial Relations Journal, vol. 46(2), 134-152. doi> full text>
  • Cao X. 2014. Submerged discontent and patterns of accommodation: a case study of doctors' pay in two public hospitals in China. Int J Health Plann Manage, vol. 29(2), 124-140. link> doi>
  • Cao X. 2013. Book review: Anita Chan (ed.), Walmart in China. Work, Employment and Society. doi>
  • Cao X. 2011. Chinese Medical Doctors Association: A New Industrial Relations Actor in China's Health Services?. Relations Industrielles/Industrial Relations, vol. 1(66), 74-97. link>

Chapters

  • Cao X and Meng Q. 2017. Dockworkers’ resistance and union reform within China’s globalised seaport industry. In Chinese Labour in the Global Economy Capitalist Exploitation and Strategies of Resistance. Routledge.

Other

  • Cao X. 2016. Book Review China at Work: A labour process perspective on the transformation of work and employment in China. doi> full text>
  • Cao X. 2013. Book review: Walmart in China, Work Employment & Society, April 2013, vol. 27 no. 2, pp. 369-371. doi>