Hope & Opportunity

Migrants - Train Station Shanghai - Hope and Opporunity

“Migrants who encounter these struggles and do not feel integrated into the city will most likely not be emotionally invested in the community. Therefore, cities should not overlook the importance of developing community-building and integration strategies to drive long-term migrant investment into the city. What is good for the citizens is good for the city. While younger generations are attracted by personally self-fulfilling journeys, professional opportunities in the tertiary sector, friends, and the allure of a modern and vibrant city, older generations have been coming for better money and a better quality of life. Those who keep up with this lifestyle will flourish while those who are more traditional may be personally pushed out of the city.”

This report explores the unique stories of Shanghai’s migrants. These migrants are individuals who come from a wide range of circumstances and from many different regions, but are all aligned in their one thing: their search for a better life and hope and opportunity for themselves and their families.

What started with the waves of migration following the opening up of China and the establishment of the Special Economic Zones has led to well established migrant population all over China representing vital and integral parts of city life, work and services. But with such diversity of work and life, and living miles from their families, how do the migrants themselves feel about the cities they live in? Do they feel invested in the city and wish to stay or is it just a time for hard work so that they can eventually return home to be with their families and friends?

Through this report we look to provide answers to the above questions and give insights into the diversity of attitudes these individuals hold.

To download the full Hope and Opportunity report, please click here.

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