Yesterday, an interesting article was published in the Philippine Daily Inquirer. The article was entitled "Why East Asians do well in math". This was the second part of an article that was published last week - with the same name. Of course, this is a news article and not a scientific paper, but I think the articles alltogether provide some interesting information about some issues with these cultures that might very well influence their students' achievement in mathematics. The final claim is that:
The secret to math success is not genetic or innate talent, but environment, family, culture.