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March 20-21: A Nation on the Move 

We are drawn to the beach-town of Qingdao for two reasons.

Reason One: Over the last 20 years, more than 150 million Chinese people have moved from the countryside into one of China's many cities. Amazingly, the pace of migration is actually expected to double over the next two decades, with another 300 million (the population of the US!) making the move. Increasingly, life in the country is seen as a dead-end; while the migrant existence is often exceptionally difficult, it at least offers the possibility of hope. What kinds of opportunities can they find in these cities?

Reason Two: China's economic growth has been driven in part by the allure of its cheap labor to multinational corporations. Many of the goods that we buy in the US are manufactured in Chinese factories, about which many concerns have been raised, ranging from working conditions to industrial pollution.

In Qingdao, we will have the opportunity to see these two phenomena firsthand. We have arranged to visit a Nike factory there, and hope to have the chance to converse with workers there about their experiences. In addition, we will meet with Marie Stopes International, a non-governmental organization which is devoted to the reproductive health of migrant women in the city.

Accommodation in Qingdao: TBA