Yan is a social scientist and a public health specialist with research interests in health system strengthening, research capacity strengthening, and science of cross-disciplinary implementation research. She joined the Centre for Capacity Research (CCR) at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM) in 2017. Yan leads a research project called the Multiple Disciplines: cross-cutting capacity development project (MUDI) which sits under the umbrella of the International Multidisciplinary Programme to Address Lung Health and TB in Africa programme (IMPALA) to generate robust evidence about what works for fostering cross-disciplinary research, and in what contexts, using Lung Health and TB as a pathfinder. She participates in teaching qualitative research methods at LSTM.
Yan received her Ph.D. in Public Health from the University of Heidelberg, Germany, M.Sc. in Social Medicine and Health Management from Fudan University, China, and B.Sc. in Public (Health) Management from Harbin Medical University, China. Before she joined LSTM, she lived and worked in, respectively, China, the Philippines, Germany and Ethiopia. Her implementation experience includes acting as a country coordinator in Ethiopia for a reproductive, maternal, new-born and child health research project. She worked at the World Health Organization Western Pacific Regional Office in the Philippines on health financing as an intern when she was a Ph.D. candidate, focusing on economic evaluation of a syndromic surveillance system for the early detection of outbreaks.