State, class and capital : gentrification and new urban developmentalism in Hong Kong

Iam Chong IP

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Drawing on a recent wave of scholarship on urban development in East Asia, this article offers a critical account of the twists and turns of Hong Kong’s urban development by focusing on class recomposition, state strategies and their relationships with the city’s changing position in its regional political economy. To do so, it examines how the middle class and their housing and investment demand have begun to lose their significance as a driver of urban gentrification. Meanwhile, since the resumption of China’s sovereignty over the city and the outbreak of Asian financial crisis, the local and central state have engineered a finance-led growth model whose diverse neoliberal interventions and political calculations have persistently lead to widespread discontent with “developer hegemony” and private property-led urban redevelopment. Using a case study of Wan Chai and the rise of serviced apartments, this article argues that this transition has marked the rise of a new urban developmentism in Hong Kong.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)547-562
Number of pages16
JournalCritical Sociology
Issue number3
Early online date28 Aug 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2018


  • China
  • East Asia
  • Hong Kong
  • gentrification
  • globalization
  • middle class
  • political economy
  • serviced apartment


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