Using fresh evidence and a novel methodological framework, this book sheds light on how institutions have driven economic reform in China's urban housing sector. The book systematically analyzes the developmental role of the state in China, with rich empirical evidence to show how decentralization has brought about significant participation by the different levels of government with the central, provincial and municipal governments focusing on initiation, intermediation and implementation roles respectively. Despite many Western analysts claiming that it is single complex superstructure, the institutionalization of governance structures in China following reforms has taken place through strong coordination between governments at different levels to meet targeted plans. Although China still has a long way to go to before it can be considered developed, this book elaborates on how the country offers a unique alternative for other states seeking to develop by striking a balance between capitalist and socialist instruments.
Publisher: Springer Verlag, Singapore
Number of pages: 133
Weight: 391 g
Dimensions: 235 x 155 x 10 mm
Edition: 2015 ed.
Over the past three plus decades China has undergone the largest growth in urban population in history. Arguably the greatest challenge of this urbanization process has been to provide adequate housing to this rapidly growing population. This effort to provide adequate urban housing for hundreds of millions of old and new urban residents was initially entirely the responsibility of state owned enterprises that were expected to provide the housing for their employees but by the late 1990s most of this housing had been privatized and the development of housing since then has involved complex relationships between state enterprises, local governments and market forces. The rapid rise in the market prices of housing further complicated the process particularly when it came to the issue of affordable housing for low income urban population. This study by Zhang Miao and Rajah Rasiah is one of the first efforts to sort out the interaction of the various forces at work. For anyone interested in the Chinese urbanization process in general and housing development issues in particular, there is no better place to start then with this book.
- Professor Dwight H. Perkins, Harvard University
This book is a major contribution to a hotly discussed topic in China. By looking at housing from the perspectives of different levels of government, it provides in-depth insights of how stakeholders interact and shape housing policy and development at each level, and how their interests converge, conflict and are ultimately reconciled. This book is therefore a timely reminder to China commentators that viewing the country through a single lens is to underestimate the complex processes behind rapidly changing China.
- Dr Cheong Kee Cheok, University of Malaya
Although there has already been important work on the development of the housing industry in China, Dr. Miao Zhang's systematic analysis makes a number of important and original contributions. She finds that although the commercialization and marketization of housing distribution greatly expanded available supply, it also generated overcapacity in certain income brackets while neglecting others. Moreover, the leading role of state-owned enterprises was hardly a panacea, as housing became an avenue for financial speculation. Only after reengaging the State, including its provincial and municipal levels, in housing construction could considerations of welfare and equity be given their due.
- Lowell Dittmer, Professor of Political Science, University of California at Berkeley and Visiting Research Professor, Institute of China Studies, University of Malaya
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