John R. Shepherd is Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of Virginia. He holds the Ph.D. in Anthropology from Stanford University. Shepherd is the author of Statecraft and Political Economy on the Taiwan Frontier, 1600-1800 (Stanford University Press, 1993), Marriage and Mandatory Abortion among the 17th Century Siraya (American Ethnological Society, 1995), and co-editor of Death at the Opposite Ends of the Eurasian Continent, Mortality Trends in Taiwan and the Netherlands, 1850-1945 (Aksant Amsterdam, 2011).
His current research focuses on the demographic history of Taiwan and its epidemiological transition, and the transformations of Siraya society and culture since the seventeenth century. He is completing papers on the practice of footbinding in Taiwan and Qing China. Shepherd has conducted ethnographic fieldwork in Taiwan on numerous occasions since the 1970s, and is an associate of the Program for Historical Demography at the Academia Sinica, Taipei.
He is a member of the American Anthropological Association and the Association for Asian Studies.