This research will examine the career dynamics of civil and military officials in 18th and 19th century China by analysis of a database of personnel records from the Qing dynasty (1644-1911). The dataset to be used for the analysis is constructed from rosters of civil and military officials that were published on a quarterly basis during the Qing. Each civil official roster records 13,000-15,000 officials, while military official rosters typically record 7,000-8,000 officials. The dataset now comprises approximately 2,800,000 records, mainly from the last half of the 19th century and early 20th century. Through nominative linkage of records in successive editions, we have reconstructed careers for nearly 300,000 officials.
Topics that may be investigated include trends and patterns in the backgrounds of officials, determinants of appointment, promotion, and exit from work, and the role of social networks in shaping the careers of officials. Techniques may include statistical analysis, visualization as well as other advanced approaches, depending on the students experience and interest.
Students should have taken basic programming classes and COMP3711 (Design and Analysis of Algorithms). Coursework related to databases or big data will be advantageous.
Use of Computer Science and Social Science Analysis Techniques