Known as “Asia’s World City”, Hong Kong is home to a large variety of languages due to its unique geographical and political status. In the past decade, Hong Kong’s booming economy has attracted a large amount of immigrants including those from Mainland China and overseas countries. With the increase in immigrants, the workplace setting has slowly evolved to adopt a multilingual environment as to accommodate various employees. It doesn’t matter if you work in McDonalds or an investment bank, it is expected for employees to have basic knowledge of Cantonese, Mandarin, and English. Our website will focus on investigating multilingualism in the workplace setting including identifying whether multilingualism is an asset or a liability, the value of various languages used in the workplace, alongside the use of code-mixing in a range of different industries in Hong Kong.
The purpose of our website is to bring further insight into the multilingual city we work in. We chose to analyse multilingualism in the marketing and communications industry as a starting point as it is one of the most multilingual work settings with a high demand in linguistic knowledge. Especially for an internationalised city like Hong Kong, it’s common for employees of public relations firms to be fluent in more than one or two languages. We hope that our website will be able to supply those working or looking to work in Hong Kong a platform where they can understand more about the value of different languages in the workplace.
Through conducting interviews with representatives from various communications firms in Hong Kong, we aim to obtain further insight into the forever evolving linguistic situation of Hong Kong. We have identified individuals of different positions and diverse backgrounds to receive a more wholesome picture of the linguistic environment at their workplace. These individuals were then interviewed on their insights towards how language is used within their workplace.
To know more about what they have to say about multilingualism in Hong Kong workplace, please click in their profile!
Course Lecturer & Project Supervisor:
Dr. Lisa Lim