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Hong Kong People Working on the Mainland: A Force for Integration?. A Preliminary Report by the CCTR-Zhongshan University Research Team 28 April 2010. Defining Identity Shift. Several ways to measure “Identity” and “Identity Change:”

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Hong Kong People Working on the Mainland: A Force for Integration?

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Hong Kong People Working on the Mainland: A Force for Integration?

A Preliminary Report by the CCTR-Zhongshan University Research Team

28 April 2010

Defining Identity Shift

  • Several ways to measure “Identity” and “Identity Change:”

  • we asked people their “identity before moving to ML,” “after moving to ML” and gave choice of:

    • 1. HK,

    • 2. basically HK but also Chinese (HK/CH)

    • 3. Both HK AND Chinese (HK+CH)

    • 4. Basically Chinese but also Hong Kong (CH/HK)

    • 5. Chinese (CH)

    • But since our focus was “identity change” I made up the following Matrix.

Matrix of Identity Change After Moving to Mainland

Mode of Adaptation

  • Based on their current identity and how far they moved, we created four categories of “Adaptation:”

  • 1. assimilators

  • 2. strong integrators

  • 3. weak integrators

  • 4. resisters.

Table 1: China’s Rise Makes Most Chinese People Feel Proud

Feeling Nationalistic?

  • “Liked living on ML,” p<.00 and strong R=.288.

  • “Satisfied living on ML” p<.00, R=.214

    Identity and patriotism are related

  • “current identity” and “China’s rise” p<.001, R=-.124.

  • People who became more Chinese after moving to the ML were more likely to support this idea (p<.001, R=-.063).

  • Of the 35 people who identify as “Chinese” (only), 18 “agreed” and 16 “strongly agreed” with this statement.

How Serious is Corruption on the ML?

Its everywhere but they never confront it!

  • 25% see it as “Very Serious,” yet only 11 people reported any experience with it.

  • over 20% of interviewees selected either “no response” or “inconvenient to say”

  • of 36 people who “liked living on the ML,” 29 selected “don’t know” when asked about the depth of corruption on the mainland.

  • Respondents who saw corruption as “extremely serious” were overrepresented among those who did not like living on the ML too much (31% vs. 18.9%).

  • concerns about corruption correlates negatively with “satisfaction with life since moving to the ML” (p<.01, R=-.041),

  • But mode of adaptation and this issue are not correlated

Support for Human Rights and Individual Freedom

  • We asked people to compare Human Rights and Individual Freedoms in HK and ML.

  • 20% of our sample see individual rights as the “same” (18%) or “better” (2.2%) on the ML.

  • Surprisingly, 45.5% believe that individual freedom on the ML is only a “little less” than in Hong Kong

  • 31.3% believe that Hong Kong is much freer.

  • those who “like to live on the ML” have a less critical view of rights and freedoms on the ML (p<.07, R=-.149), relative to HK.

Table 3. Views on Individual Rights and Freedoms in ML and HK, 4 Cities

Higher score means more critical views of the quality of Individual Rights and Freedoms in the ML

Human Rights and Individual Freedom: Comparing HK and the Mainland

  • On “Human Rights and Individual Freedom”, there is no statistical relationship with Mode of Adaptation,

  • but a significantly smaller number of Assimilators, compared to other categories, felt that Hong Kong was a “much freer society,” with more of them represented in the group that felt that Hong Kong was “somewhat better.”

  • 34% of the sample picked HK was much freer, but only 21% of Assimilators felt that way.

  • Here are four tables that show that there is a relationship between the Mode of Adaptation and responses to political factors in the ML.

Ability to Become a Service Oriented Government in 3-5 years

Chi-Square = p < 0.09, Pearson’s R = 0.131, p < 0.05

Mode of Adaptation and Current Perception of Government Efficiency

Pearson Chi-Square, p<.01, Pearson R = .118, p<.07

Mode of Adaptation and Views on Severity of Inequality in Mainland

Chi-Square, p<.05; R=-.127, p<.06

Easier to Affect Government Policy in HK or ML?

Chi-Square: p<.001, Pearson R = .131, p<.05


  • Mode of Adaptation or changes in Identity do have an impact on the political views of HK people living on the ML.

  • Assimilators tend to be more understanding of the political system, see it more positively and be unwilling to see some of its drawbacks, such as the glaring inequality.

  • People overall willing to talk about many views, except about Corruption

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