Koreatown in Manhattan, Image credit: Jinwon Kim

My research explores questions about how the global political economy and consumer culture interact with national/ethnic identities and urban changes and the creative economy in an era of global competition. A major challenge has been determining how global changes intersect with individuals’ everyday lives, “bottom-up” participation in transnational activities. Using participant observation, in-depth interviews, archival research of national and local newspapers, analysis of government publications, and economic data, my research looks at how “macro” processes encounter the “micro” level of individual and group interactions to reconstruct the urban landscape of ethnic enclaves in global cities toward market-oriented spaces.

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