Johanna von Pezold

Ms Johanna von Pezold

PhD Student

8/F Hub, 8/F., The Jockey Club Tower, Centennial Campus


Johanna von Pezold is a full-time PhD candidate in sociology at the University of Hong Kong, where she is researching the trade and consumption of Chinese-made fashion products in Mozambique.

Originally from Germany, Johanna obtained an MSc in Contemporary Chinese Studies from the University of Oxford in 2017. For her master’s thesis, she conducted ethnographic fieldwork in the Mozambican capital Maputo, examining mutual fashion adaptation in the context of Chinese migration to Mozambique. Before that, she has been studying Chinese and Economics at the University of Hamburg and the Pontifícia Universidade Católica in Rio de Janeiro. At Peking University, she has been a visiting student at the School of Chinese as a Second Language, supported by a Chinese Government Scholarship. She has worked for the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung in Beijing, the BRICS Policy Center in Rio de Janeiro, and leading management consulting firms.

Johanna is especially interested in transnational flows of non-Western fashion and material culture, interactions between global commodity production and local consumer cultures, and China’s relations to the Portuguese-speaking world. She is a Hong Kong PhD Fellowship holder and the first recipient of the CHAT Research Grant, awarded by the Hong Kong Centre for Heritage, Arts and Textile.


Departmental Visiting Student, School of Anthropology and Museum Ethnography
University of Oxford (St. Cross College), UK

Associate Researcher, Centre of African Studies
Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, Mozambique

Visiting Student, Chinese Language
Peking University, PR China

Master of Science, Contemporary Chinese Studies
University of Oxford (St. Catherine’s College), UK

Visiting Student, Chinese Foreign Relations and Brazilian Social Debates
Pontifícia Universidade Católica in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Bachelor of Arts, Economy and Culture of China
Universität Hamburg, Germany

Research interests


Material culture




Cultural mediation


Global production networks

China-Africa relations

Contemporary Chinese society

Lusophone Africa

Honours and recognitions

CHAT 2021 Research Grant, Centre for Heritage, Arts and Textile, 2021

Hong Kong PhD Fellowship, Hong Kong Research Grants Council, 2018

EU Window Chinese Government Scholarship, China Scholarship Council, 2017

Book prize for the best final presentation in Chinese, Oxford University Language Centre, 2017

The Harold Bailey Prize for outstanding performance in Asian Studies, St. Catherine’s College, University of Oxford, 2017

DAAD Graduate Scholarship, German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), 2016

Full five-year scholarship, German Academic Scholarship Foundation (Studienstiftung), 2013

Selected publications

von Pezold, J. and Driessen, M. (2021). “Made in China, fashioned in Africa: ethnic dress in Ethiopia and Mozambique”, Africa. Vol. 91, No. 1. 317-36.

von Pezold, J. (2020). “Fashion and China-Africa Relations”, Hong Kong Review of Books.

von Pezold, J. (2019). “‘It is Good to Have Something Different’: Mutual Fashion Adaptation in the Context of Chinese Migration to Mozambique”, Asia Pacific Perspectives. Vol. 16, No. 1. 34-64.

von Pezold, J. (2018). “Mögliche Einflüsse Mao Zedongs auf die Strategie des IS [Possible Influences of Mao Zedong on ISIS Strategy]”, in Jahrbuch Terrorismus 2017/18 [Terrorism Yearbook 2017/18], edited by Stefan Hansen and Joachim Krause, Verlag Barbara Budrich, 331-347. (In German)