Place attachment and political orientation: The case of localists in Hong Kong

Yan Lam Lo, Man Yee Karen Lee, Lewis Ting On Cheung, Anson Tsz Hin Ma

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study extends the application of place attachment, which is widely used in environmental science research, to the field of political and civic studies. It compares place attachment between citizens with different political orientations and citizenship identities. In addition to its “cognitive” aspect, this study includes an “affective” dimension that has rarely been featured in the extant literature. Our findings, based on a telephone survey of 607 Hong Kong residents, confirm that place attachment is composed of both cognitive and affective dimensions. Besides, the mean score of self-identified “localists” and “Hong Kongers” on place attachment was significantly lower than that of “centrists” and those with no political orientation, as well as those who identified themselves as “Chinese Hong Kongers,” respectively. The weak place attachment among the localists amid Hong Kong's tremendous social and political challenges is most alarming, which highlights the need for policy makers to quickly address the issue.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)76-83
Number of pages8
JournalAsian Journal of Social Science
Issue number2
Early online dateMar 2021
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021


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