Dr Wang PengAssociate Professor
+852 3917 2058
Peng Wang is Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology, the University of Hong Kong (HKU). He is an associate member of the Extra-legal Governance Institute at the University of Oxford. He holds a PhD in Law and an MA in Criminology and Criminal Justice from King’s College London. His research focuses on organized crime, corruption, police and policing, informal institutions, and China studies.
He is the author of The Chinese Mafia: Organized Crime, Corruption, and Extra-legal Protection (Oxford University Press, 2017). The most significant features of this book include: (1) it offers the first scholarly account of the rise of the Chinese Mafia in contemporary China based on published materials and fieldwork data; (2) it presents an innovative new theory, Socio-Economic Theory, in the study of the mafia; (3) it examines the conflict between laws and guanxi (the Chinese version of interpersonal networks) and explores the embeddedness of the extra-legal protection business into social networks; (4) it studies two major types of extra-legal institution: Red Mafia (corrupt public officials) and Black Mafia (street gangsters); their formation, roles and collusion.
Since joining HKU in summer 2014, Peng has published five articles in The British Journal of Criminology, one of world’s top criminology journals, and four articles in The China Quarterly, the world’s leading China Studies journal. Other works appeared in journals such as Australian and New Zealand Journal of Criminology, Journal of Contemporary China, Survival: Global Politics and Strategy, The RUSI Journal, Trends in Organized Crime, and Global Crime. He is currently working on the politics of crime control and the role of patronage networks in the Chinese bureaucratic system.
King’s College London
MA Criminology and Criminal Justice
King’s College London
East China University of Political Science and Law (Shanghai, China)
Crime and anti-crime
Corruption and anti-corruption
Bureaucracy and governance
Law and society
Face, emotional bonding and corruption: How middlemen facilitate corrupt exchanges in China
Anti-corruption and the decline of the social relation-based development model
Explaining the persistence of campaign-style policing in China
Wang, P. (2017) The Chinese Mafia: organized crime, corruption and extra-legal protection. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
—Winner, The Social Sciences Outstanding Research Output Awards 2016-2017 for Basic Research, Faculty of Social Sciences, The University of Hong Kong
Wang, Peng (in press). “How to engage in illegal transactions: Resolving risk and uncertainty in corrupt dealings”. The British Journal of Criminology. 60(5),1282–1301.
Wang, Peng (2020). “Politics of crime control: How campaign-style law enforcement sustains authoritarian rule in China”. The British Journal of Criminology. 60(2), 422–443.
Wang, Peng & Xia Yan (2019). “Bureaucratic slack in China: The anti-corruption campaign and the decline of patronage networks in developing local economies”. The China Quarterly.
Varese, Federico, Peng Wang & Rebecca Wing Yee Wong (2019). “‘Why Should I Trust You with My Money?’: Credible Commitments in the Informal Economy in China”. The British Journal of Criminology. 59(3), 594-613.
Li, L. & Wang, P. (2019). “From Institutional Interaction to Institutional Integration: The National Supervisory Commission and China’s New Anti-corruption Model”. The China Quarterly. 240, 967–989. (corresponding author)
Wang, P. & Wang, J (2018). “How China promotes its military officers: Interactions between formal and informal institutions”. The China Quarterly. 234, 399-419.
Wang, P. & Cho, L. F. & Li, R. (2018). “An Institutional Explanation of Media Corruption in China”. Journal of Contemporary China. 27(113), 748-762.
Wang, P. (2016). “Military Corruption in China: The role of guanxi in the buying and selling of military positions”. The China Quarterly. 228. 970-991.
Wang, P. & Antonopoulos, G. (2016). “Organized crime and illegal gambling: How Do Illegal Gambling Enterprises Respond to the Challenges Posed by Their Illegality in China?”. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Criminology. 49 (2), 258-280.
Skarbek D. & Wang, P. (2015). “Criminal Rituals”. Global Crime. 16(4), 288-305.
Wang, P. (2014). “Extra-legal protection in China: How guanxi distorts China’s legal system and facilitates the rise of unlawful protectors”. The British Journal of Criminology. 54 (4). 809-830.
Wang, P. & Blancke, S. (2014). “Mafia State: The Evolving Threat of North Korean Narcotics Trafficking”. The RUSI Journal. 159 (5). 52-59.
Broadhurst, R. & Wang, P. (2014). “After the Bo Xilai Trial: Does Corruption Threaten China’s Future?”. Survival: Global Politics and Strategy. 56 (3). 157-178.
Wang, P. (2013). “The Increasing Threat of Chinese Organised Crime: National, Regional and International Perspectives”. The RUSI Journal. 158 (4). 6-18.
Wang, P. (2013). “The Rise of the Red Mafia in China: A Case Study of Organised Crime and Corruption in Chongqing”. Trends in Organized Crime. 16 (1). 49-73.
Wang, P. (2011). “The Chinese Mafia: Private Protection in a Socialist Market Economy”. Global Crime. 12 (4). 290-311.
Wang, P. (forthcoming) ‘Red Mafia’, in Wiley Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology (2nd Edition). London: Wiley-Blackwell.
Wang, P. (2015). Organized Crime in a Transitional Economy: The Resurgence of the Criminal Underworld in Contemporary China. G. Barak (Ed.). Routledge International Handbook on the Crimes of the Powerful. Pages 401-11. Routledge.