Compound Professionals: Chinese Financial and Legal Elites in London's Financial District

Friday, 3 July 2015: 4:00 PM-5:30 PM
CLM.3.06 (Clement House)
Sarah Hall, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, United Kingdom
There is an established literature that examines the mobility of highly skilled professionals between advanced economies in a range of sectors. However, understandings of the recent growth of highly skilled migration from emerging economies to established global cities remain limited.  In response, this paper examines new forms of elite mobility associated with highly skilled migration & expatriation from China to London’s financial & related professional services sectors.  This pipeline has increased in importance following the development of London as an offshore Renminbi (RMB) centre from 2011 onwards when a growing number of Chinese financial and legal firms have opened offices in London. The associated highly skilled mobility of financial and legal professionals, through practices including secondments, internships and expatriation, is shown to give rise to compound professional identities that combine elements of both London and China’s institutionalised practices and norms. As a result, it is argued that these new forms of mobility are likely to be important in shaping the future development, and continued specificity of London’s financial district.