School of Law

Ao Zhang

Ao ZhangAo Zhang

MSc in Criminology, Queen’s University of Belfast

BSc (Hons) in Criminology and Criminal Justice, Ulster University

LL.B., National Police University of China

Doctoral research topic: Do ‘women in prison fare better in China’? A qualitative analysis of the Chinese female prisoners’ experience in two Chinese female prisons

My research is to investigate the current prison lives of female prisoners in mainland China, particularly looking at the treatment of Chinese female prisoners during their incarceration. By adopting the international human rights treaties and non-treaty standards, particularly the Standard Minimum Rules of the Treatment of Prisoners (SMR) and the ‘Bangkok Rules’, as a measure of best practice, my research aims to examine the level of experiences of females’ imprisonment, looking in particular at prison condition, procedure, culture and how these ‘play out’. Due to the fact that current Chinese academia and legislations continue to widely ignore the gender-specific considerations of female prisoners, the primary fieldwork and empirical analysis in two Chinese female prisons are able to contribute to theoretical discussion within the context of the penology and provide more effective guidance for prison practice.