ASSIMILATION, PERCEPTION AND RELATION:A QUALITATIVE STUY OF THE CHINESE IN ACCRA, GHANA<br />Jinghao Lu<br />April 28, 201...
Introduction<br />Importance of studying Chinese Migrants in Africa<br />Increasing Chinese involvement in Africa<br />A n...
Chinese Temporary Labor Migrants<br />From 1949-1979: China’s ideological aid to Africa<br />Since 1979, increasing econom...
Chinese Entrepreneurial Migrants<br />China’s Open Door Policy (1979) and Go Out Policy (1999)<br />Entrepreneurial Migran...
General Characteristics of the Chinese immigrants in Africa<br />A lack of reliable data<br />Money as a major incentive f...
Theoretical Framework<br />Assimilation Theories<br />Alba and Nee (1997).<br />Waters and Jiménez (2005).<br />The assimi...
Research Methods<br />Site Selection: 			Accra, Ghana<br />Sampling Methods: 		Convenience Sampling<br />Data Collection: ...
Demographic Characteristics<br />Estimated Number: 30,000<br />From various Origin<br />Two major occupations: <br />SOE e...
Results<br />Overall degree of assimilation of the Chinese immigrants  in Ghana are very low.<br />Language, living and wo...
Results (continue)<br />Overall attitudes and perceptions to Ghanaians are negative more than positive.<br />Generally spe...
Conclusions<br />This research is only explorative. More research should be encouraged in the future.<br />The Chinese imm...
Question and Comments?<br />Please contact Jinghao Lu (jxl5106@psu.edu) if you are interested in reading the thesis. <br />
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  • Alba and Nee (1997),“the decline, and at its endpoint the disappearance, of an ethnic/racial distinction and the cultural and social differences that express it” Waters and Jiménez (2005) suggest assimilation can be measured on socioeconomic status, residential patterns, linguistic patterns, and intermarriage. Chinese Assimilation1) identify themselves as ethnic Chinese and total assimilation is unlikely among overseas Chinese due to Cultural Greater China (Wang, 1993).2) Policies in the host country may play a large role in facilitating assimilation of the Chinese. Lima&apos;s social institution SE Asia&apos;s regulation
  • Over 10 yrs. --- merchants
  • 1. Could not be used to contradict Waters and Jiménez’s (2005). Resonate with some research about the assimilation of overseas Chinese.2. Chinese SOE workers and traders tend to have very low interests in knowing about Ghanaian culture and making Ghanaian friends, whereas the workers and owners of private companies, especially the restaurants, show better understanding and appreciation of the Ghanaian culture and people. 3.Language: an obstacleLiving Context: Scattered and enclosedWork Context: Higher wages but with long work hours or heavy workloadsRecreational Options: Not much choices; not interactive with GhanaiansHealth Care Options: Prefer Chinese clinics and doctorsSocial Organizations: 1) Weak connections; 2) Chambers of commerce; 3)Online community
  • 1. This may be because of the nature of the context in which they encountered Ghanaians, for example, the employer/supervisor positions of Chinese and lower level positions of Ghanaian within a Chinese company. A feeling of superiority further made Chinese discriminate against Ghanaians. When misunderstanding occurs due to cultural difference, Chinese may attribute the responsibility to the Ghanaian workers.It seems ambiguous to conclude what factors led Chinese to have negative versus positive perceptions and attitudes towards Ghanaians. Generally speaking, having more interaction with Ghanaians other than subordinates might increase possibilities for Chinese to obtain a more balanced view about Ghanaians. Hence, whether assimilation may relate to the perceptions and attitudes towards Ghanaians is uncertain.Tensions and ConflictsIn employment contextsIn local marketsWith the Ghanaians officials and government workersChinese’ Discrimination to “the black” The recent Chinese immigrants and the tensionsBoth sides are trying to facilitate the mutual understandingNot very effective
  • Jinghao's Honors Thesis Presentation

    1. 1. ASSIMILATION, PERCEPTION AND RELATION:A QUALITATIVE STUY OF THE CHINESE IN ACCRA, GHANA<br />Jinghao Lu<br />April 28, 2010<br />Photo from http://www.internationalrivers.org/files/images/Hu%20in%20Liberia%20cropped.jpg <br />
    2. 2. Introduction<br />Importance of studying Chinese Migrants in Africa<br />Increasing Chinese involvement in Africa<br />A new trend: lack of research, especially about the life and assimilation of the immigrants<br />Partial media depictions from both sides<br />Source: Park, Y. (2009).Chinese migration in Africa. South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA) Occasional Paper Number 24.<br />
    3. 3. Chinese Temporary Labor Migrants<br />From 1949-1979: China’s ideological aid to Africa<br />Since 1979, increasing economic relationships between China and Africa<br />2000, 2006 Forum for China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC)<br />In Ghana: a series of projects, including a hydroelectric dam, two stadia, buildings, roads and fiber-optic cable<br />A large influx of the temporary labor migrants<br />Employees of State-owned enterprises (SOEs)<br />Government sent workers<br />Increasing contract workers for the Chinese private companies<br />
    4. 4. Chinese Entrepreneurial Migrants<br />China’s Open Door Policy (1979) and Go Out Policy (1999)<br />Entrepreneurial Migrants<br />Traders: wholesalers and retailers of Chinese goods<br />Other types of businesses: Chinese clinics, restaurants, manufacturing, etc. <br />Family networks and chain migration<br />
    5. 5. General Characteristics of the Chinese immigrants in Africa<br />A lack of reliable data<br />Money as a major incentive for the decision of migration or stay<br />Do not form Chinese community; keep themselves<br />Do not seek integration with the local society<br />
    6. 6. Theoretical Framework<br />Assimilation Theories<br />Alba and Nee (1997).<br />Waters and Jiménez (2005).<br />The assimilation of overseas Chinese in different countries<br />My Research Questions:<br />Do assimilation patterns vary among different groups of Chinese immigrants in Accra? <br />How assimilation of Chinese explains their positive versus negative perceptions and attitudes towards Ghanaian locals? <br />How does assimilation affect the relationship between Chinese and Ghanaians? <br />Research Model<br />
    7. 7. Research Methods<br />Site Selection: Accra, Ghana<br />Sampling Methods: Convenience Sampling<br />Data Collection: In-depth interviews Observation<br />Number of Interviewees: 29 Chinese<br /> 12 Ghanaians<br />Length of Interviews: 0.5 to 2 hours<br />
    8. 8.
    9. 9.
    10. 10. Demographic Characteristics<br />Estimated Number: 30,000<br />From various Origin<br />Two major occupations: <br />SOE employees <br />Private Company owner/workers<br />Restaurant<br />Wholesalers/ Individual traders<br />Others<br />Money as a main reason of migration<br />Many migrants age from 20-30<br />Interaction with Ghanaians depends on occupations.<br />
    11. 11. Results<br />Overall degree of assimilation of the Chinese immigrants in Ghana are very low.<br />Language, living and work context, recreational and health options and social organizationsare good indicators of assimilation<br />Assimilation patterns are different among different occupational groups.<br />Living and work contexts appear to influence the willingness of assimilation<br />Positive Indicators: longer length of stay, ambition to improve English and company policies on encouraging intergroup interactions<br />Negative Indicators: tough workload, short-term labor contract, good health care provision, minimum opportunities to go out and frequency in use of internet for entertainment<br />With obvious indication: younger age, language ability and frequent contact with Ghanaians; English (?)<br />
    12. 12. Results (continue)<br />Overall attitudes and perceptions to Ghanaians are negative more than positive.<br />Generally speaking, Chinese immigrants tend to think Ghanaians are not diligent, not honesty, greedy and simple-minded.<br />whether assimilation may relate to the perceptions and attitudes towards Ghanaians is uncertain.<br />The relationship between Chinese immigrants and Ghanaians<br />Only a small number of Ghanaians have interactions with Chinese.<br />Friendship and brotherhood do exist. <br />Tension also exists:<br />Bad labor practices of Chinese<br />Unfair competition in markets<br />Conflicts with the government workers<br />Discrimination from Chinese towards Blacks in general<br />Conflict escalation due to recent Chinese immigrants<br />Efforts to improve the situation are sporadic.<br />
    13. 13. Conclusions<br />This research is only explorative. More research should be encouraged in the future.<br />The Chinese immigration to Ghana will continue.<br />At least among the immigrant generation, Chinese tend not to assimilate in Ghana, but some occupations have relatively higher degree of assimilation.<br />The perception from Chinese to Ghanaians are generally negative.<br />There are both good and bad relationships between Chinese and Ghanaians. Generally, it tends to deteriorate.<br />Both Chinese and Ghanaian government should be responsible to change the situation.<br />
    14. 14. Question and Comments?<br />Please contact Jinghao Lu (jxl5106@psu.edu) if you are interested in reading the thesis. <br />
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