Jiang Anli, a PhD student from the Department of Sociology, Faculty of Social Sciences (FSS), University of Macau (UM), was recently nominated for the Best Student Paper Award at the 20th Urban China Research Network (UCRN) Conference, for her paper titled ‘Life Course and Blocked Vending Dreams: Understanding Street Vendors’ Drift in Criminal Economy in Guangzhou, China’.

Backed by three years of ethnographic fieldwork in Guangzhou, Jiang’s paper examines the impact of a city-wide campaign to crack down on street vending and the vendors’ consequent adaptations. The study has found that while the campaign has had little impact on some well-connected local vendors, it marked a turning point for some vendors who were forced to upgrade their skills and ended up in better occupations. However, for the majority of the vendors, their vending life has become more precarious, with some resorting to crime to make a living. The paper further explores how street vendors’ social, economic and cultural capital affect their different adaptions. This research study contributes to a better understanding of how a macro-structural anomic situation affects the life course of a marginal population and their drift in and out of criminal activities.

Held in Nanjing, this year’s conference attracted 180 scholars from around the world and received 50 PhD papers from different countries and regions, including the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macao. Jiang’s study was funded by a multi-year research grant from UM. Prof Xu Jianhua, associate professor and head of the Department of Sociology at UM, is the project’s principal investigator. A previous paper from this project, co-authored by Prof Xu and Jiang, titled ‘Police Civilianisation and the Production of Underclass Violence: the Case of Para-police Chengguan and Street Vendors in Guangzhou, China’, has been published in one of the top criminology journal The British Journal of Criminology (first issue, 2019).  

The UCRN, initiated in 1999 by a group of researchers at the University at Albany, State University of New York, aims to promote multidisciplinary research through international conferences, discussions between faculty members and students, the establishment of work groups, and funding for promising projects. UCRN is now supported by many institutions and scholars around the world.

Source: Faculty of Social Sciences


Ou Chuyue, a PhD student from the Department of Communication, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Macau (UM), received the Top Paper Award at the 68th Annual Conference of the International Communication Association (ICA), for her paper, titled ‘From Offline to Online: How Mainland Chinese Postgraduates in Macao Construct and Present Their Identities’.

Held in Prague, Czech Republic, this year’s conference attracted approximately 3,300 scholars from around the world. Ou’s paper, ‘From Offline to Online: How Mainland Chinese Postgraduates in Macao Construct and Present Their Identities’, explores how postgraduates in mainland China understand the terms ‘mainland’ and ‘Hong Kong and Macao’ in the context of the ‘One Country, Two Systems’ policy, as well as how they construct and present their identities in different situations. It received the award from the ICA’s Intercultural Communication Division.

The ICA is an academic association for scholars interested in the study, teaching, and application of all aspects of human and mediated communication. With a history of over 50 years, it boasts more than 4,500 members in 80 countries.

Liu Tzu-suan and Xia Yiwei, PhD students from the Department of Sociology, Faculty of Social Sciences (FSS), University of Macau (UM), and their supervisor Prof Spencer De Li, associate dean of the FSS, recently won a second prize at the National Conference on Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment and the 17th Academic Conference of the Chinese Association of Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment, for their co-authored paper titled ‘Parenting Practices and Adolescent Drug Use: A Comparison between China and USA’.

By combining the baseline data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997 in the United States and the data collected by UM’s research team in a large city in China (the latter was funded by UM, with Prof Spencer Li as the principal investigator), the study systematically compares the differences in parenting practices and substance use between China and the US in the two survey samples. It has found that the rate of substance abuse is significantly lower among Chinese adolescents than among their American counterparts. Further, by comparing the influences of parental supervision, response and control on adolescent substance abuse in the two countries, the study has found that in China, parental supervision and response significantly inhibit adolescent substance abuse while parental control shows no noticeable effect; but in the US, parental supervision, response and control all play a significant role in preventing adolescent substance abuse. The study provides social and cultural explanations of the differences between the two countries.

This year’s conference attracted a record number of participants and papers. More than 500 representatives from mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macao participated in the conference and submitted more than 100 papers in total. The event was administrated by the Chinese Association of Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment, with Taiwan Society for Substance Abuse Research as a co-organiser.

Dorji Wangchuk, a PhD student from the Department of Communication, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Macau (UM), recently received the Top Student Paper Award at the 103rd Annual Convention of the National Communication Association (NCA) held in Dallas, Texas, United States. The award was conferred by the Religious Communication Association (RCA), an affiliate organisation of the NCA.

The award-winning paper, titled ‘Buddhism and its Influence on Communication in Bhutan: Search for the Middle Path in the Age of Social Media’, explores the influence of Buddhism in communication behaviours in the Kingdom of Bhutan. The paper has been recognised for its ‘contribution to the study of religious communication’ by the association.

The Religious Communication Association (RCA) is an academic society founded in 1973 for scholars, teachers, students, clergy, journalists, and others who share an interest in religious speech, rhetoric, media, and performance. The National Communication Association was founded in 1915 with a mission to advance communication as the discipline that studies all forms, modes, media, and consequences of communications through humanistic, social scientific, and aesthetic inquiry. Its 103rd annual convention attracted about 4,000 scholars, researchers, and educators from around the globe.


A paper co-written by Prof Chen Huailin and PhD student Xu Min from the University of Macau (UM) Department of Communication recently received a second prize in the outstanding paper category at the China Communication Forum 2017 on November 12. This year’s event attracted 260 experts and scholars from more than 100 universities, research institutes, and publishing companies in the United States, mainland China, Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan. Of the 200 papers presented at the forum, four were written by UM members.


今屆大會吸引來自美國、海峽兩岸及港澳地區的百多所高校、研究及出版機構共260位專家學者參加,論文發表共200餘篇,其中澳大共有四篇論文入選發表。是次會議由資深學者對論文作出評審,共頒一等獎一個 、二等獎四個和三等獎六個。最終,陳懷林和徐敏就典型人物宣傳長期效果的研究論文突圍而出,獲頒二等獎。