Chinese–African encounters in high-tech sectors: Comparative investigation of Chinese workplace regimes in Ethiopia

Ding Fei, Abdi I Samatar, Chuan Liao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Studies on China–Africa co-operation have revealed increasing diversification of China's on-the-ground practices in Africa. However, engaged research has yet to examine the situated experiences of Chinese and African individuals whose activities shape and are shaped by Chinese multinationals, especially those in the growing yet underexplored high-tech sectors. To address this gap, this article investigates the workplace regimes of two Chinese companies in Ethiopia. Using a mixed-method approach, it articulates the contradictory nature of Chinese investment and its diverse manifestations in work relations between Chinese expatriates and local Ethiopians. Our findings suggest that Chinese and Ethiopian employees are proactive yet constrained agents in exploiting work opportunities for their own economic interests and professional development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)O455-O475
JournalDevelopment Policy Review
StatePublished - Mar 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
1An earlier version of this article was presented at the Annual Meeting of American Associations of Geographers in Chicago, IL, 2015. Comments from Padraig Carmody during the conference helped greatly to improve the article. The lead author is also grateful to all the participants in the research. Financial assistance to the field research was from the Graduate Research Partnership Program (GRPP) Fellowship at the University of Minnesota. The usual disclaimer applies.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Authors 2017. Development Policy Review © 2017 Overseas Development Institute


  • China–Africa co-operation
  • Ethiopia
  • high-tech sector
  • labour
  • workplace regimes


Dive into the research topics of 'Chinese–African encounters in high-tech sectors: Comparative investigation of Chinese workplace regimes in Ethiopia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this