Yu-Ling Chang

Yu-Ling ChangAssistant Professor Yu-Ling Chang's scholarly interests focus on the relationships among poverty, inequality and social safety net programs. Her research addresses both the process of policymaking and the consequences of public policies for economically disadvantaged populations. Her research agenda is informed by her professional experiences serving and advocating for individuals suffering economic hardship during the global economic recession in the late 2000s.

Dr. Chang's current research projects investigate the General Assistance reform in Washington State, the state Unemployment Insurance approaches to social protection, the policy impacts of state Unemployment Insurance modernization on working families, and the multiple program participation among single mother families during and after the Great Recession.

Her research has secured substantial support from leading regional and national research centers, including the GSR Award from the Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, the Washington State Labor Research Grant from the Harry Bridges Center for Labor Studies, the Social Policy Fellowship Program from the West Coast Poverty Center and the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) Training Grant from the National Poverty Center.

Dr. Chang is expanding her research scope from cross-state comparative research in the US to cross-national comparative research in a global context. She is engaged in international collaborations, including with the Institute for Social Development at NYU-Shanghai and with the Department of Social Work and Social Administration at the University of Hong Kong.

Dr. Chang earned her Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) and Master of Social Work (MSW) from National Taiwan University. She also holds a PhD in social welfare from the University of Washington, with a concentration in public policy and management and a certificate in statistics track in social science.

Curriculum Vitae

Office: Haviland Hall 217

Phone:  (510) 643-2786

Email:  ylchang@berkeley.edu

Research / Expertise

  • Poverty and Inequality
  • Unemployment and Labor Studies
  • Social Safety Net Programs / Income and Work Supports
  • Policy Analysis
  • International Social Welfare


  • SW 116 Current Topics in Social Welfare Policy: Poverty & Income Support Policies
  • SW 220 Introduction to Social Welfare Policy

Honors / Awards

  • W.E. Upjohn Institute Early Career Research Award, 2019
  • Regents Junior Faculty Fellowship, 2018
  • Institute for Research on Labor Employment Research Grant, 2017-2018
  • Society for Social Work and Research Outstanding Social Work Doctoral Dissertation Award, 2017
  • Washington State Labor Research Grant, 2015
  • Social Policy Research Fellowship, West Coast Poverty Center, 2012-2014

Expanded Publications

Chang, Y.-L. (2019). The politics of knowledge and poverty: A case study of Washington State’s reform of the General Assistance program. Journal of Sociology and Social Welfare, (46)2.

Chang, Y.-L. (2019). Unequal social protection under the federalist system: Three Unemployment Insurance policy approaches in the United States, 2007-2015.Journal of Social Policy.

Martinson, M. L., Chang, Y.-L., Han, W.-J., & Wen, J. (2018). Child overweight and obesity in Shanghai, China: Contextualizing Chinese socioeconomic and gender difference. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 25(1), 141-149.

Chang, Y.-L. (2017). An overview of the General Assistance. In R. Rycroft (Ed.), The American middle class: An economic encyclopedia of progress and poverty (pp.168-171). Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO/Greenwood.

Chang, Y.-L. (2016). State social safety net programs and the Great Recession: The first line of defense and the last resort for the economically disadvantaged(Doctoral dissertation). University of Washington, Seattle Washington.

Chang, Y.-L.;(2015). Re-examining the U.S. social safety net for working-age families: Lessons from the Great Recession and its aftermath. Journal of Policy Practice, 14(2), 139-161.

Bartle, E., Barretti, M., & Chang, Y.-L. (2015). Policy practice framework. In S. J. Roll (Ed.), Macro Practice in Social Work: From Learning to Action for Social Justice (pp. 23-27). Special Commission to Advance Macro Practice in Social Work. Work Group #2: Knowledge Development, Transmission, and Application.

Storer, H. L., Mienko, J. A., Chang, Y.-L., Kang, J. Y., Miyawaki, C., & Schultz, K. (2012). Moving beyond dichotomies: How the intersection of race, class and place impacts high school graduation rates for African American students .;Journal of Sociology & Social Welfare, 39(1), 17-45.