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  • Global City, Dual City?

Global City, Dual City?

Globalization and Social Polarization in Hong Kong since the 1990s

Stephen W. K. Chiu, Tai-lok Lui

English , 2004/01 HKIAPS, Occasional Paper Series Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies, CUHK

Tags: Hong Kong Studies

215 x 140 mm , 60pp ISBN / ISSN : 978-962-441-144-7

  • US$3.00

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Global City, Dual City?: Globalization and Social Polarization in Hong Kong since the 1990s In this paper, using data generated from the population censuses, we document the process of social polarization that has accompanied the globalization of Hong Kong. By the early 1990s, Hong Kong had obviously become qualified to be regarded as global city, as suggested in the literature on global cities. Also as predicted in the literature, we have observed a process of occupational and income polarization in Hong Kong since the 1990s, as a result of the transformation of the city from an industrial colony to a producer service-driven global city. We outline the dimension of gender in this polarization process, and demonstrate how the forces of migration exacerbated the process of social differentiation, to produce a social structure that resembles an "hour glass." While our findings clearly support Sassen's hypotheses regarding the social consequences of the development of global cities, we have also sought to highlight the mediating effect of local institutional contexts in crystallizing the local impact of global forces.

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