Diaspora-management policies of modern ‘city-states’: strategies and practices of engaging Overseas Chinese by Shanghai Municipal Government

Jasmin Hasic

Political Research Exchange. Taylor & Francis Online August 2020 [Access to full article]


The number of states that have developed layered engagement policies aimed at co-opting various migrant or diaspora groups has exponentially risen in the past couple of years. The highest political leadership of China has also recognized the need to tackle this matter systematically within its national political and institutional setup. The primary objective of this research note is to explore the Chinese government's framing and capacity to shape cooperation mechanisms with Chinese migrant and diaspora communities abroad, through analyzing the work of the Office of Overseas Chinese Affairs of the Shanghai Municipal Government. My primary aim is to trace and reconstruct locally designed mechanisms employed by government agents to capture certain migrant groups into their own structures of local programmes. I outline what the practical implications of such localized management practices in China are, specifically focusing on agency, institutions and processes, and assessing the impact of the resulting complexities in the current institutional set-up of the Shanghai Municipality.

This project receives funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Grant Agreement No 722826.