Xin Zhao was born and raised as a Bai ethnicity kid in Yunnan, a mountainous province in southwest China where more than 25 minority ethnic groups live. Later, he received his B.A. degree in Advertising from Zhejiang University while he also took minor courses in Finance and Mathematics.
During his undergraduate period, he gradually became interested in the rich cultural and historical heritage as well as the socio-economic development of his hometown. Recently, he is conducting field research on the use of endangered languages like Bai and Yi in cyberspace. He is particularly interested in various code-switching phenomena in synchronous messaging, the mediated role of information and communication technologies (ICT), as well as the development of minority language and cultural communities. At Yale, Xin hopes to continue adopting interdisciplinary approaches on more cultural topics, exploring the impacts of “mediated culture” on everyday social life.
He enjoys watching sci-fi movies, playing video games, listening to jazz and pop, visiting galleries, dancing, cooking, and swimming. He keeps his heart beating with pop culture, living in but also reflecting on the metaphors in our digital lives.