Collective Action of 'Others' in Sydney

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Walter F Lalich


Various ethnic communities undertake collective action to satisfy their social needs in a place of settlement. Collectively created social resources are representative of the patterns of fragmented ethnic collective actions that differ in their capability to appropriate human and material resources, orientation, outcome, form and intensity. Through collective creation of social space migrants add a new and dynamic dimension to the social environment. During the dramatic post-1945 changes in Sydney demographic and cultural structures, over 450 “other” (ethnic) collectives mobilised through grass-roots efforts their scarce resources and created needed collective goods, such as places of worship, clubs, schools, age care facilities. In this way, through creation of communal roots ethnic collectives navigate the path between exclusion and the various forms of inclusion in a dynamic culturally diverse society. Ethnic communal places signify collective conscience, participation, and the embeddedness of transplanted cultures in a transforming social environment and transnational social space.

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Special Issue Articles (Peer Reviewed)
Author Biography

Walter F Lalich, University of Technology Sydney

Walter Lalich, born in Western Australia, educated in Croatia, has economics degree from the University of Zagreb, Master of Economics from the University of Western Australia, and was awarded a PhD from the University of Technology, Sydney in 2004 with thesis on Ethnic Community Capital: The development of social infrastructure in Sydney. Currently he is converting the thesis into a book. He has a chapter in the volume Chinese Voluntary Organizations in the Diaspora edited by K.E. Kuah-Pierce (HKU) and E. Hu-DeHart (Brown), just published by the Hong Kong University Press, and in Geographies of Voluntarism: New Space of Health, Welfare and Governance edited by C. Milligan (Lancaster) and D. Conradson (Southampton), to be published in 2006 by the Policy Press, Bristol. Major research interests: migrant settlement in the urban environment, ethnic communal places and space, transnational space, heritage, ethnic collective action, mobilization of second generation, organisational sustainability, return migration.