Felipe Rubio Isla

Felipe Rubio
Image Credit: Felipe Rubio

International Research Training Group "Between Spaces"

Movements, Actors and Representations of Globalisation

Field of Activity

Project: "Chinese-Peruvian Communities in Lima, Peru"

Address Boltzmannstr. 4
14195 Berlin
Email rubio@zedat.fu-berlin.de



Ph.D. Global Studies, Universität Leipzig, Germany


M.A. Society and Politics, Lancaster University, UK


B.A. Sociology and Philosophy, University of Toronto, Canada

Academic Appointments

2013 - Present

Postdoctoral Fellow, Research Training, Institute for Latin American Studies, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany

2008 - 2013

Doctoral Fellow, 'Transnationalization and Regionalization from the 18th Century to the Present'
Graduate School: Global and Area Studies - Universität Leipzig, Germany

2009 - 2011

Lecturer, Sociology Institute, Universität Leipzig, Germany

2008 - 2010

Teaching Assistant, Global and European Studies Institute, Universität Leipzig, Germany

Invited Lectures


“Peruanos Reshaping Former Colonial Spaces.” Invited at Department of Sociology Speaker Series,
Brock University, St. Catharines, Canada, 26 January.

“Welcome to Madrid, How Long Are You Staying?” Invited Paper at Sociology and Anthropology Department, Alternative Social Possibilities,
University of Guelph, Canada, 19 January.

Related Professional Experience

10/2007 - 09/2008

Researcher, United Nations University for Peace, Toronto, Canada

05/2003 - 09/2005

Policy Analyst, Hispanic Development Council, Toronto, Canada

04/2002 - 04/2003

Young Professional, Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada, Iquitos, Peru

"Chinese-Peruvian Communities in Lima, Peru"

Supervisor: Prof. Dr. Marianne Braig (Freie Universität Berlin)

This project examines the creation, and lasting expansion of transnational social spaces between Lima, Peru and Hong Kong. The focus will be on how cultures are inscribed into urban spaces. This research will draw evidence from Hong Kong, PRC and Lima, Peru.

The central goal of this project is to examine how historical and current globalizing spaces unfold, and how they play an integral role in the social, cultural, and spatial history of a city. It will do so by investigating the daily lives of Chinese-Peruvian transnational communities in Hong Kong and Lima through the social spaces they inhabit, and by researching spatial and historical links between Chinese-Peruvian communities between these two regions of the globe.

The year 1999 officially marked the 150th anniversary of Chinese migration to Peru. As in California, the majority of this Diaspora began to arrive as indentured workers in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries to work in the gold mines, as well as in the sugar and cotton plantations throughout the coastal regions of the country. Lima became an urban center where Chinese migrants built communities. Beginning in the late 1860s, Chinese merchants from San Francisco began to build trading networks with Lima, the urban center in the country with the largest Chinese Diaspora in Latin America. Many settled in Lima, and would later developed transnational spaces between Lima’s La Concepción market, today’s Chinatown, importing goods (crockery, silks, furniture, articles made of bamboo) and food, (rice and products for Chinese cuisine) and Hong Kong, a connection that continues to this day through different historical processes.

This research will produce knowledge about past and present transnational migration through an under-researched link. It will contribute across several disciplines including contemporary debates on transnationalism, as well as arguments about the importance of social space and locality, and its influence within globalization processes. Moreover, to continue research on processes of transculturation brought forth by the de-territorialization and re-territorialization of different ethnic groups sharing, and contesting common social spaces.

Book Chapters

  • forthcoming (2014), ‘Pioneer Migrants: Peruvian Women (Re)Shaping Social Spaces in Madrid’, in: Guida Man and Rina Cohen (eds.), Transnational Voices: Global Migration and the Experiences of Women and Children, Waterloo, Ontario: Wilfrid Laurier University Press.

  • (2010), ‘Arjun Appadurai’, in: Matthias Middell and Ulf Engel (eds.), Theoretiker der Globalisierung (key thinkers on globalization), Leipzig: University of Leipzig Press, p. 41-54.

Articles in progress

  • ‘Shifting Spaces: Translocal Experiences of Peruvian Migrants in Madrid, Spain.’

  • ‘Urban Nationalisms: Peruvians and the Contesting of Social Spaces in Contemporary Madrid’

Other Publications

  • (2006), with Ramos, Duberlis and Gustavo Neme, ‘Capacity Building for Peace and Development: A Potential Role for the Colombian Diaspora’, In: Role of Diaspora, High Level Expert Forum, Toronto: United Nations University, p. 85-116.