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Low sense of belonging in cosmopolitan cities | Updated: 2017-09-12 16:07

Low sense of belonging in cosmopolitan cities

Night view of Lujiazui Financial and Trade Zone of Pudong in Shanghai, July 8, 2017. [Photo/VCG]

Do you feel you don't belong to the city where you live and work? You're not alone.

A new report issued by, a leading recruitment website in the country, said white–collar workers who live in first-tier cities such as Beijing and Shanghai don't quite feel they belong to the city.

Meanwhile, people who work in Chongqing identify most closely to the place, followed by Changsha and Shenyang.

Cities such as Guangzhou, Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen score quite low on the “belonging” index, with the four cities ranked 26, 31, 32 and 36 on the list, respectively.

The report said the fast pace and high living cost put considerable pressure on the white-collar workers, adding that these two main factors make them feel less wanted in the cities.

More than 50 percent of respondents said the inability to purchase property makes it the top reason why they feel no sense of belonging. Half said they feel unwelcomed due to the high living cost and huge pressure.

Moreover, lack of life partners (33.6 percent), parents not around (33.3percent), unable to blend into local culture (19.2percent) and having no local household registration (11.2 percent) are other reasons contributing to the issue of lack of sense of belonging.

The result shows that length of working years and salary are positively linked to the sense of belonging. Also those who have local household registration feel more welcome than those who don't.

But why do they still want to stay?

Forty-seven percent of people admit they are used to the lives they have now rather than going back and starting all over. More than 40 percent say they can't give up their jobs and 37.9 percent think it's convenient to live where they are.

Among people who do feel they belong to the city, better medical care is the top reason (57.6 percent) for them to feel welcomed. About half of the respondents said they feel a sense of belonging because their parents and friends live in the same city.

According to the survey, 35.6 percent like convenience and 33 percent think there are more work opportunities.

The study interviewed 24,390 respondents and the participants came from various industries.

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