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Mimi Zou

Within the scholarly and policy discourses on the regulation of child labour in China, the focus has been on the period of rapid industrialization since the opening up and reform of China’s economy in recent decades. However, there have been very few studies that have situated the evolution of China’s legal framework to address child labour issues in a historical context. This chapter fills this important void by examining how child labour practices were regulated in imperial China and the development of laws from the nineteenth century onwards that sought to address what was perceived by society as the worst forms of such practices. These historical insights aim to shed light on the social, economic and cultural factors that have shaped the quest to end child labour in the world’s largest industrializing economy. At the same time, the country’s rapid industrialization and urbanization over the past three decades have seen new social problems arising from mass rural-to-urban migration that create particular risks of child labour for children of rural migrant workers.

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Regional Infrastructure Systems

The Political Economy of Regional Infrastructure

Colin Turner

As the international economy globalises, there is a need for national infrastructure systems to adapt to form a global infrastructure system. This network of networks aids mobility between national systems as a means of supporting their territorial needs and preferences. This reflects a strategic approach to state infrastructuring as nations seek to utilise these physical systems to support and enhance their territoriality. Providing a thorough examination through the lens of economic infrastructure, the book addresses the forces of integration and fragmentation in global networks.
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Colin Lizieri and Daniel Mekic

There is a growing awareness in urban social science of the importance of commercial real estate as a medium by which large cities are embedded within global capital networks. This trend is most pronounced in the office markets of international financial centres and has become more marked with increasing globalization of commercial real estate. Nuances of market processes can be lost in over-simplistic categorizations such as ‘international financial capital’ or ‘property developers’. Diversity in the nature of office investors leads to substantial differences in the motivations for building international portfolios and in impacts for the cities concerned. This chapter provides a detailed examination of the City of London office market, drawing on a unique database tracing office ownership over some 40 years. The changing tides of ownership, from predominantly local domestic to over 60 per cent non-UK owned in 2014, are linked to transformations of the City of London economy.

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Geraldine Sadoway

Canada has no national policy to take care of separated refugee children . . . Separated refugee children seem to fall into the gap between federal responsibility for immigration and provincial responsibility for youth protection.1 The Committee [CRC] urges the State party to bring its immigration and asylum laws into full conformity with the Convention and other relevant international standards and reiterates its previous recommendations (CTC/C/15/ Add.215, para. 47, 2003). There are many examples of children and youth who travel alone or with friends, separated from parents or legal guardians, to reach a safe place such as Canada in order to escape danger in their home country.3 According to recent estimates, as many as 3,000 unaccompanied children arrive in Canada seeking refugee status every year.4 Sometimes the children are orphans, or have become separated from their parents due to war or civil unrest. Sometimes the parents (or one of the parents) are the source of danger to the child. Some young people have fled their homes due to abuse by a parent or relative and they cannot obtain effective protection from the authorities in their own country. Children may be victims of illegal trafficking groups or may be targeted for kidnapping in order to extort money from parents or relatives who have travelled abroad to seek employment. Sometimes very young children are sent out of the home country by their parents with friends or relatives or with paid agents, in order to save the life of the child due to serious dangers facing the entire family in the home country, or in the country of first asylum.5 Although there is no single explanation for the fact that children are crossing international borders on their own, it is very clear that such children constitute an extremely vulnerable group of migrants that require special measures of protection.

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Catriona Jarvis and Syd Bolton

Case law, legislation and policies concerning migrant and refugee children have on the whole developed positively in the United Kingdom, particularly since the withdrawal in 2009 of its immigration reservations against the 1989 UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. In practice, however, the implementation of these standards and responsibilities has been undermined by the UK government’s ‘hostile environment’ approach to border control measures, restrictions on access to justice and legal aid. Laws intended to enable the admission of asylum-seeking children to the United Kingdom from continental Europe, including for family reunion, have been dilatory. A sceptical, contingent approach to child refugee status determination leaves children in a position of temporary rather than enduring protection. This approach conflicts with the rights, needs and interests of migrant and refugee children living in or seeking to enter the United Kingdom, who now also face an increasingly uncertain future as the United Kingdom embarks on the process to leave the European Union following the ‘Brexit’ referendum result in 2016.

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Protecting Migrant Children

In Search of Best Practice

Edited by Mary Crock and Lenni B. Benson

Unprecedented numbers of children are crossing international borders seeking safety. Framed around compelling case studies explaining why children are on the move in Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe, the Middle East and Oceania, this book explores the jurisprudence and processes used by nations to adjudicate children’s protection claims. The book includes contributions from leading scholars in immigration, refugee law, children’s rights and human trafficking which critically examine the strengths and weaknesses of international and domestic laws with the aim of identifying best practice for migrant children.
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Saskia Sassen

One key hypothesis I arrived at early on in my research was that intermediation was an increasingly strategic and systemically necessary function for the global economy that took off in the 1980s (Sassen, 1991/2001, 2012; Sassen-Koob, 1982). This in turn led me to generate the hypothesis about a need for specific types of spaces: spaces for the making of intermediate instruments and capabilities. One such strategic space concerned the instruments needed for outsourcing jobs, something I examined in my first book. But what began to emerge in the 1980s was on a completely different scale of complexity and diversity of economic sectors: It brought with it the making of a new type of city formation. I called it the global city – an extreme space for the production and/or implementation of very diverse and very complex intermediate capabilities. This did not refer to the whole city. I posited that the global city was a production function inserted in complex existing cities, albeit a function with a vast shadow effect over a city’s larger space. In that earlier period of the 1980s, the most famous cases illustrating the ascendance of intermediate functions were the big mergers and acquisitions. What stood out to the careful observer was how rarely the intermediaries lost. The financiers, lawyers, accountants, credit rating agencies, and more, made their money even when the new mega-firm they helped make eventually failed. Finance became the mother of all intermediate sectors, with firms such as Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan making enormous profits, followed at a distance by the specialized lawyers and accountants. From the early phase dominated by mergers and acquisitions, intermediation has spread to a growing number of sectors. This also included modest or straightforward sectors: For instance, most flower sellers or coffee shops are now parts of chains, they only do the selling of the flowers or the coffee, and it is headquarters that do the accounting, lawyering, acquisition of basic inputs, etc. Once, those smaller shops took care of the whole range of items; they were a modest knowledge space. Intermediation can now be thought of as a variable that at one end facilitates the globalizing of firms and markets and at the other end brings into its envelope very modest consumer oriented firms. It also contributes to explaining the expansion in the number of global cities and their enormous diversity in terms of specialized knowledges.

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Christof Parnreiter

This chapter departs from an understanding of the global city model as an economic geography concept to comprehend the function and position of specific economic actors in certain cities in the management and, in particular, in the ‘command and control’ of the world economy. Because the global city literature has not advanced satisfactorily in deepening our understanding of the role of global cities in the world economy and, in particular, in the organization of globalization, the chapter suggests an operationalization of research on global city makers and their practices through the conceptualization of global cities as critical nodes in global commodity chains. To deepen this notion, the chapter discusses global city formation in two non-prime global cities, namely Mexico City and Hamburg.

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Lenni B. Benson and Claire R. Thomas

In theory, United States immigration statutes offer many forms of protection and integration to foreign national youth. In practice, however, the ability of young people to access relevant special visa categories is frustrated by process barriers and the lack of adequate information and skilled counsel. Under US law, migrant children may seek protection as refugees; they may qualify for permanent residence if they have been abandoned, abused or neglected by a parent; they may be protected if victims of crimes or trafficking. In this chapter, we explore whether US domestic legal systems protect children’s procedural rights. We note at the outset that the US Constitution has been applied consistently to protect both citizen and foreign-born children with regard to fundamental rights such as education, safety and criminal punishment. Between October 2010 and October 2016, the US government initiated 177,561 removal or deportation cases against children. Of these, 41 per cent or 73,013 cases remained pending in mid-2017. This suggests that children are given time and process in removal proceedings. In this chapter we examine some of the reasons why ‘due process’ does indeed require time, as we explore measures that would greatly reduce the procedural protections that have been available.

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Colin Turner