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Politics and International Relations (PIR): People


Sarah Liu

Sarah Liu
Dr Sarah Liu
Lecturer in Gender and Politics
B.2 22 George Square Edinburgh UK EH8 9LF
Research Interests
Gender, women's and social movements, women's political representation, women's political participation, migration and citizenship, media, East Asian politics

Guidance and Feedback Hours

  • Semester 2 (2019/20): Wednesdays 2:00pm - 4:00pm


Dr. Sarah Liu is a Lecturer in Gender and Politics at the University of Edinburgh. She joined the subject area of Politics and International Relations in January 2019, having previously taught at Newcastle University, Smith College, and the Pennsylvania State University.

Sarah is an Associate Editor of Representation: Journal of Representative Democracy. She also sits on the editorial board of Political Behavior and the advisory board of Politics, Groups, and Identities. She also serves as an elected member of the executive council of the Women and Politics Research Section of the American Political Science Association. Sarah has been recognized as an Emerging Diversity Scholar by and is a member of the University of Michigan’s National Center for Institutional Diversity

Sarah holds a dual PhD in Political Science and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies from the Pennsylvania State UniversitySarah obtained an M.A. in Intercultural Service, Leadership, and Management at the World Learning SIT Graduate Institute and a B.A. in American Studies and Studio Art with a minor in International Peace Studies from the University of Notre Dame.

For more information about Sarah, please visit her website.


Sarah's research focuses on the cross-national comparison of gender and politics, specifically the ways contexts shape the gender gap in political attitudes and activities. She employs a mixed methodologies in her research. Specifically, utilizing multilevel modeling approaches, her work examines the influence of female political leaders on women’s political participation. Particularly, her research investigates the role model effect of cabinet ministers in democracies, a previously ignored political arena, and the role model effect of legislators in Asia, a grossly underexplored area in extant studies. She also evaluates how social movements affect adolescents’ attitudes toward gender roles and propensity to protest.

In Gendering Immigration: Media Framing of Immigration and Public Opinion on the Huddled Masses, she analyzes gender in media framings of immigration and immigrants and the varying media framings’ impacts on citizens’ attitudes about immigrants. Employing cross-national content analysis and survey experiments, she investigates the gender/gendered differences in the media constructions of immigration and their effects on native citizens’ acceptance of male and female immigrants in Hong Kong, Taiwan, the United Kingdom, and the United States.


Sarah has had the pleasure to design and teach Gender and Politics, Politics of Immigration, Chinese Politics, East Asian Politics, Global Feminisms, Introduction to Women's and Gender Studies, and Research Methods in Politics. She  translates  her analysis of gender in her research into course materials that engage students’ interests in exploring critical questions about gender in political institutions and social structures. 


Peer-Reviewed Articles and Chapters

Liu, S. Gender Gaps in Political Participation across Asia. International Political Science Review. Forthcoming

Liu, S. Gender, Migration, and News. In The International Encyclopedia of Gender, Media, and Communication, ed. Karen Ross. Forthcoming.

Liu, S. “Too Feminine to be a Leader? Systematic Implicit Biases against Women Politicians” in P. Loewen, E. Goodyear-Grant, & E. Tolley (ed.) Women in Politics, Women in Leadership. University of Toronto Press. Forthcoming.

Liu, S. Framing Immigration: A Content Analysis of Newspapers in Hong Kong, Taiwan, the U.K. and the US. Politics, Groups, and IdentitiesPublished first online on October 16.

Liu, S. Chinese Migrant Wives in Taiwan: Claiming Entitlement, Resisting Inequality, and Rejecting Citizenship. International Feminist Journal of Politics. Published first online on May 3, 2019.

Liu, S. Are Female Political Leaders Role Models? Lessons from Asia. Political Research Quarterly, 71, no. 2 (2018): 255-269.

Liu, S. & Banaszak, L.A. Do Government Positions Held by Women Matter? A Cross-National Examination of Female Ministers’ Impact on Women’s Political Participation. Politics & Gender 13, no. 1 (2017): 132-162.

Book Review

Thematic Review: Women in Power: The Fight for a Seat in the Boys’ Club. Women Take Their Place in State Legislatures: The Creation of Women's Caucuses. By Anna Mitchell Mahoney. Temple University Press, 2018. 258 pp. $99.50 (hardcover), $29.25 (paperback). A Seat at the Table: Congresswomen's Perspectives on Why Their Presence Matters. By Kelly Dittmar, Kira Sanbonmatsu, and Susan J. Carroll. Oxford University Press, 2018. 272 pp. $99.00 (hardcover), $27.95 (paperback). Women as Foreign Policy Leaders: National Security and Gender Politics in Superpower America. By Sylvia Bashevkin. Oxford University Press, 2018. 290 pp. $74 (hardcover). Politics & Gender, pp.1-8.

Review of Torben Iversen and Frances Rosenbluth. Women, Work, and Politics: The Political Economy of Gender Inequality. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. 2010. vii + 201 pp. International Feminist Journal of Politics.


Liu, S. Liu, S. Taiwan’s First Female President Easily Won Reelection: Are Asian Women Taking Note? Washington Post Monkey Cage, February 10.

Liu, S. "Cracking Gender Stereotypes? Challenges Women Political Leaders Face." Political Insight 10, no. 1 (2019): 12-15.

Liu, S. Am I an Asian Woman or a Woman who is AsianDiscover Society, July 2019.

Liu, S. & Wang, A. Taiwan votes on 10 referendums this week. Here’s what you need to knowThe Washington Post – Monkey Cage, November 21.

Liu, S. Why are Asia’s women politicians facing a backlash? The Conversation, May 31.

Liu, S. Posey, P. & Reuning, K. Who were the protesters at the Democratic National Convention this week? The Washington Post – Monkey Cage, July 29.

Liu, S. Posey, P. & Reuning, K. Three surprising facts about the protesters at the Republican National ConventionThe Washington Post – Monkey Cage, July 24.

Do female ministers affect women’s civic engagement? Policy Options at the Institute for Research on Public Policy, March 27, 2018.

Selected Media Engagement

BBC Radio Scotland, 2019-2020

BBC Radio London, 2019-2020

Rocking Our Priors, July 7, 2019.

The 51 percent: Asian women in politics, France 24, June 8, 2018.

Newsday, BBC World, June 6, 2018.

Topics Interested in Supervising

Sarah is able to offer PhD supervison in areas related (but not limited) to her research interests, such as gender politics,  immigration, social movements, media, political opinion and behavior, and Asian politics. She particularly welcomes prospective students with innovative research ideas and approaches to studying the role of gender in politics.

If you are interested in being supervised by Sarah Liu, please see the links below for more information:

PhD in Politics; MSc (R) Politics