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Rural China takes off : institutional foundations of economic reform /
Jean C. Oi.
Berkeley : University of California Press, 1999.
xv, 253 p. : ill. ; 23 cm.
0520200063 (alk. paper)
More Details
Berkeley : University of California Press, 1999.
0520200063 (alk. paper)
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references (p. 219-236) and index.
A Look Inside
Flap Copy
"A distinctive and important contribution."--Thomas P. Bernstein, author of Up to the Mountains and Down to the Villages
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1999-10-01:
Follow the money trail. This is the lesson of Oi's brilliant piece of political economy and detective work. The author performs an institutional analysis of the underlying causes of China's post-Mao economic development. The unexpected conclusion: that China's rapid economic growth is linked to specific responses by local government officials to economic incentives created by national economic reforms. Oi's application of the concept of a principal-agent relationship between the central and local governments is unique and provocative. The text's focus on local government officials as pseudo-Schumpeterian entrepreneurs driving the economic development process forward by making decisions in their own self-interest is supported by detailed descriptions of economic relationships and empirical data. Anyone interested in the transition from central planning to a market economy would find this approach both interesting and useful. Recommended for collections supporting courses in economic development, comparative economic systems, China studies, and political economy. Undergraduate and graduate students; faculty; and professionals. S. J. Gabriel Mount Holyoke College
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, October 1999
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Long Description
In this incisive analysis of one of the most spectacular economic breakthroughs in the Deng era, Jean C. Oi shows how and why Chinese rural-based industry has become the fastest growing economic sector not just in China but in the world. Oi argues that decollectivization and fiscal decentralization provided party officials of the localities--counties, townships, and villages--with the incentives to act as entrepreneurs and to promote rural industrialization in many areas of the Chinese countryside. As a result, the corporatism practiced by local officials has become effective enough to challenge the centrality of the national state. Dealing not only with the political setting of rural industrial development, Oi's original and strongly argued study also makes a broader contribution to conceptualizations of corporatism in political theory. Oi writes provocatively about property rights and principal-agent relationships and shows the complex financial incentives that underpin and strengthen the growth in local state corporatism and shape its evolution. This book will be essential for those interested in Chinese politics, comparative politics, and communist and post-communist systems.
Table of Contents
List of Illustrations and Tables
Note on Measures and Transliteration
Institutional Foundations of Chinese Economic Growth: An Introductionp. 1
Reassigning Property Rights over Revenue: Incentives for Rural Industrializationp. 17
Strategies of Development: Variation and Evolution in Rural Industryp. 58
Local State Corporatism: The Organization of Rapid Economic Growthp. 95
Principals and Agents: Central Regulation or Local Controlp. 139
From Agents to Principals: Increasing Resource Endowments and Local Controlp. 161
The Political Basis for Economic Reform: Concluding Reflectionsp. 191
App. A: Research and Documentationp. 205
Changes in China's Fiscal Systemp. 211
Bibliographyp. 219
Indexp. 237
Table of Contents provided by Blackwell. All Rights Reserved.

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