Social Stratification in Migrant-Concentrated Communities in China: Findings From a Five-City Study of Migration and Urban Poverty

Dr. Fei Guo
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Based on the data from a recently conducted five-city study of migration and urban poverty in China, this paper examines the patterns of integration/segregation and social stratification of migrants in the host communities. Going beyond the traditional rural/urban dichotomy, this paper pays special attention to the structure of the host communities (neighborhood committees and village committees). Migrants in the two types of communities show considerable different patterns of settlement. Although locals are normally better off, considerable differences in living conditions between the locals and migrants in these two types of communities can be clearly observed. Income and welfare inequality are also analyzed. The paper demonstrates that the migrant-concentrated communities in Chinese cities have been segregated from the mainstream communities. In some segregated communities, locals and migrants become similar to certain extent. Urban poor are joined by the migrants who are also disadvantageous in the society.

Keywords: Labour Migration, Social Stratification, China
Stream: Sociology and Geography
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: Social Stratification in Migrant-Concentrated Communities in China

Dr. Fei Guo

Senior Lecturer, Department of Business
Division of Economic and Financial Studies, Macquarie University

Sydney, NSW, Australia

Fei Guo has a Ph. D. degree in Sociology from the University of Hawaii and the East-West Center in 1996. She is currently a Senior Lecturer in Demography at the Department of Business, Macquarie University, Australia. Prior to Macquarie, she conducted research at the University of Wollongong, and was an Andrew Mellon Post-doctoral Fellow at the Australian National University. Dr. Fei Guo is a social demographer with research interests in labour migration in China, skilled and business migration in the Asia Pacific, and immigrants' labour market performance in Australia. She has published a number of papers/books in these areas. Two recent books include: Return Migration in the Asia Pacific (co-edited with R. Iredale and S. Rozario) by Edward Elgar Publishing, U. K. and China’s Minority on the Move (co-eited with R. Iredale and N. Bilik) by M. E. Sharpe. Currently, she is carrying out a research project to study labour migration and urban poverty in China which is funded by the Ford Foundation. She is currently also working on a co-edited book entitled Population in China at the Beginning of the 21st Century, which will be published by the Oxford University Press.

Ref: I06P0156