Strategic (De)coupling of Hongkonger Diaspora with Global Cities

Thu Aug 8, 2024

11:30 – 13:00

PCN 2012

6445 University Blvd

Bio and Abstract below.


Kaxton SIU

Department of Sociology and David C. Lam Institute for East-West Studies (LEWI),
Faculty of Social Sciences, Hong Kong Baptist University



The recent emigration of Hong Kong residents has garnered significant scholarly interest in the socio-political and cultural ramifications for both the Hong Kong diasporic community and their host societies. However, there has been a relative lack of attention towards examining how types of the Hong Kong diaspora align with their new communities and cities. Specifically, this study explores how Hong Kong migrants, possessing varied professional skill sets honed in a global city like Hong Kong, navigate the transition to another global city with divergent development and economic upgrading strategies. Drawing upon the concept of “strategic (de)coupling” from global value chains studies, this research proposes a comprehensive framework elucidating how Hong Kong emigrants strategically manage their post-migration adjustments while preserving a certain level of social standing, economic competitiveness, political involvement, and cultural identity as “Hongkongers.”


Kaxton Siu is an associate professor at the Department of Sociology in The Hong Kong Baptist University. He researches comparative labor studies, migration studies, urban sociology, and youth studies. He also specializes in Chinese society, Hong Kong society, Vietnamese society, Japanese society, and Cambodian society. He has published two books: Chinese Migrant Workers and Employer Domination: Comparisons with Hong Kong and Vietnam in 2020, and Hong Kong Society: High-Definition Stories beyond the Spectacle of East-Meets-West in 2022. His current research include: a) Chinese investors in Vietnam and Cambodia and their impact on industrial relations systems and labor standards, b) Chinese and Vietnamese industrial trainees in Japan, and c) governing social and economic upgrading: skills, global value chains and developmental state in China and Vietnam.