Maria Adele Carrai

Maria Adele Carrai
(马晓冉), P.h.D

Assistant Professor of Global China Studies


Address: W732, New Bund Campus567 West Yangsi Road, Pudong New District, Shanghai, China

Maria Adele Carrai is an Assistant Professor of Global China Studies at NYU Shanghai. Her research explores the history of international law in East Asia and investigates how China’s rise as a global power shapes norms and redefines the international distribution of power. She co-leads the Research Initiative ‘Mapping Global China,’ and is the author of Sovereignty in China. A Genealogy of a Concept since 1840 (CUP 2019) and co-editor of The China Questions 2 – Critical Insights into US-China Relations (HUP 2022).

Before joining NYU Shanghai, she was a recipient of a three-year Marie-Curie fellowship at KU Leuven. She was also a Fellow at the Italian Academy of Columbia University, Princeton-Harvard China and the World Program, Max Weber Program of the European University Institute of Florence, and New York University Law School.

Her research has been supported by various prestigious sources, including the British Academy through its Global Convening Program and Knowledge Translation Grant. She has also received the NYU Rapid Response Technical Assistance Grant, Humanities Seed Grant, and NYU Shanghai Boost Fund. Her work has garnered support from the Shanghai Municipal Education Commission, the Ministry of Science and Technology of the People’s Republic of China, the Shanghai Municipal People’s Government, and the Shanghai Pudong New Area Government. Further contributions have come from the Flemish Research Foundation, Harvard Law School, the Hong Kong Government, and the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.


  • PhD, Law
    The University of Hong Kong
  • MA, Political Science
    University of Bologna
  • MA, East Asian Studies
    Ca’ Foscari University of Venice
  • BA, Chinese Studies
    Sapienza University of Rome

Research Interests

  • International Law
  • Legal History
  • International Relations