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postgraduate thesis: Demystifying integration regimes in cities: acomparative analysis of Berlin and Hong Kong

TitleDemystifying integration regimes in cities: acomparative analysis of Berlin and Hong Kong
Authors
Advisors
Issue Date2012
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
Abstract The integration of immigrants is a major source of social tension in multicultural cities. In Europe, the issue has become particularly contentious after the attacks of September 2001. Cities and societies are not immune to the challenges of social fragmentation and polarization caused by the forces of global migration. This thesis addresses the central question of why the course of integration remains largely problematic and difficult in cities that have become accustomed to diversity. It responds to the existing weaknesses of mainstream research paradigms by conducting a comparative and interdisciplinary analysis of the development of integration regimes in Berlin and Hong Kong that casts doubts on the ability of the ‘multicultural’ politics to mitigate the consequences of immigration and integration in cities. This thesis suggests that the course of integration is a global as well as a local challenge that is simultaneously affected by the forces of globalization and shaped by the distinctive socio-economic context and cultural-historical background of each receiving city. The comparative study demonstrates that the challenges in Berlin are embedded in the broader European anxiety over the two-fold threats of Islam and terrorism, the ethno-cultural German tradition, and the city’s strained socio-economic situation. The problems with integration in Hong Kong are closely related to the colonial legacy, the city’s difficult integration with mainland China, and the surging political sentiment in society. The study suggests that cities and local governments are not as accommodating to diversity as they claim to be, as racial discrimination and exclusion remain commonplace in both cities. It also rejects the presumed link between the celebration of diversity and the successful course of integration which is entangled with the limitations of the existing ‘multicultural paradigm’ that influences the policymaking. This thesis shows how the paradigm contributes to the growing gap between the active integration policy and the actual predicaments of integration. By offering a global comparative perspective, this cross-regional study is in a better position to capture the current trend of development and to explain concrete problems with integration in cities, thereby addressing some of the limitations of the mainstream nation-centered studies confined to the Western context.
DegreeMaster of Philosophy
SubjectImmigrants - Cultural assimilation - China - Hong Kong.
Immigrants - Cultural assimilation - Germany - Berlin.
Dept/ProgramModern Languages and Cultures

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.advisorCristaudo, WA-
dc.contributor.advisorVogt, CR-
dc.contributor.authorChau, Ling-fung, Karin.-
dc.contributor.author周凌楓.-
dc.date.issued2012-
dc.description.abstract The integration of immigrants is a major source of social tension in multicultural cities. In Europe, the issue has become particularly contentious after the attacks of September 2001. Cities and societies are not immune to the challenges of social fragmentation and polarization caused by the forces of global migration. This thesis addresses the central question of why the course of integration remains largely problematic and difficult in cities that have become accustomed to diversity. It responds to the existing weaknesses of mainstream research paradigms by conducting a comparative and interdisciplinary analysis of the development of integration regimes in Berlin and Hong Kong that casts doubts on the ability of the ‘multicultural’ politics to mitigate the consequences of immigration and integration in cities. This thesis suggests that the course of integration is a global as well as a local challenge that is simultaneously affected by the forces of globalization and shaped by the distinctive socio-economic context and cultural-historical background of each receiving city. The comparative study demonstrates that the challenges in Berlin are embedded in the broader European anxiety over the two-fold threats of Islam and terrorism, the ethno-cultural German tradition, and the city’s strained socio-economic situation. The problems with integration in Hong Kong are closely related to the colonial legacy, the city’s difficult integration with mainland China, and the surging political sentiment in society. The study suggests that cities and local governments are not as accommodating to diversity as they claim to be, as racial discrimination and exclusion remain commonplace in both cities. It also rejects the presumed link between the celebration of diversity and the successful course of integration which is entangled with the limitations of the existing ‘multicultural paradigm’ that influences the policymaking. This thesis shows how the paradigm contributes to the growing gap between the active integration policy and the actual predicaments of integration. By offering a global comparative perspective, this cross-regional study is in a better position to capture the current trend of development and to explain concrete problems with integration in cities, thereby addressing some of the limitations of the mainstream nation-centered studies confined to the Western context.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.publisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)-
dc.relation.ispartofHKU Theses Online (HKUTO)-
dc.rightsThe author retains all proprietary rights, (such as patent rights) and the right to use in future works.-
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License-
dc.source.urihttp://hub.hku.hk/bib/B4786980X-
dc.subject.lcshImmigrants - Cultural assimilation - China - Hong Kong.-
dc.subject.lcshImmigrants - Cultural assimilation - Germany - Berlin.-
dc.titleDemystifying integration regimes in cities: acomparative analysis of Berlin and Hong Kong-
dc.typePG_Thesis-
dc.identifier.hkulb4786980-
dc.description.thesisnameMaster of Philosophy-
dc.description.thesislevelMaster-
dc.description.thesisdisciplineModern Languages and Cultures-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-
dc.identifier.doi10.5353/th_b4786980-
dc.date.hkucongregation2012-

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