IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/chieco/v25y2013icp17-26.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The economic causes and consequences of social instability in China

Author

Listed:
  • Knight, John

Abstract

This paper provides a survey of the economic literature relevant to social instability in China and moulds it into an argument. The objective is to offer a fresh view of economic policy and performance through the lens of the threat posed by social instability. This is a concept that economists rarely analyse, and yet it can lurk behind much economic policy-making. China's leadership has often publicly expressed its concern to avoid ‘social instability’. It is viewed as a threat both to the political order and to the continued rapid growth of the economy. This threat to growth in turn endangers the maintenance of social stability. The paper examines the likely economic determinants of social instability, using both surveys and other evidence. After discussing the determinants of China's rapid growth, the paper goes on to examine the likely mechanisms by which social instability can affect the growth rate. There is a case for more research on the role of social instability in the economic development process.

Suggested Citation

  • Knight, John, 2013. "The economic causes and consequences of social instability in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 25(C), pages 17-26.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:chieco:v:25:y:2013:i:c:p:17-26
    DOI: 10.1016/j.chieco.2013.01.001
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1043951X13000035
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. William Easterly & Jozef Ritzen & Michael Woolcock, 2006. "Social Cohesion, Institutions, And Growth," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 18(2), pages 103-120, July.
    2. Shang-Jin Wei & Xiaobo Zhang, 2011. "The Competitive Saving Motive: Evidence from Rising Sex Ratios and Savings Rates in China," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 119(3), pages 511-564.
    3. John Knight & Li Shi & Deng Quheng, 2010. "Son Preference and Household Income in Rural China," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 46(10), pages 1786-1805.
    4. Alesina, Alberto & Perotti, Roberto, 1996. "Income distribution, political instability, and investment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 1203-1228, June.
    5. Campos, Nauro F. & Nugent, Jeffrey B., 2002. "Who is afraid of political instability?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 157-172, February.
    6. Knight, John & Ding, Sai, 2012. "China's Remarkable Economic Growth," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199698691.
    7. John Knight & Linda Yueh, 2008. "The role of social capital in the labour market in China," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 16(3), pages 389-414, July.
    8. Appleton, Simon & Song, Lina, 2008. "Life Satisfaction in Urban China: Components and Determinants," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(11), pages 2325-2340, November.
    9. Aisen, Ari & Veiga, Francisco José, 2013. "How does political instability affect economic growth?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 29(C), pages 151-167.
    10. Knight, John & Deng, Quheng & Li, Shi, 2011. "The puzzle of migrant labour shortage and rural labour surplus in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 585-600.
    11. Paul Collier & Anke Hoeffler, 2004. "Greed and grievance in civil war," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(4), pages 563-595, October.
    12. Knight, John & Gunatilaka, Ramani, 2012. "Income, aspirations and the Hedonic Treadmill in a poor society," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 82(1), pages 67-81.
    13. Perotti, Roberto, 1996. "Growth, Income Distribution, and Democracy: What the Data Say," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 1(2), pages 149-187, June.
    14. Frijters, Paul & Liu, Amy Y.C. & Meng, Xin, 2012. "Are optimistic expectations keeping the Chinese happy?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 159-171.
    15. Alesina, Alberto & Özler, Sule & Roubini, Nouriel & Swagel, Phillip, 1996. "Political Instability and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 1(2), pages 189-211, June.
    16. Easterlin, Richard A. & Morgan, Robson & Switek, Malgorzata & Wang, Fei, 2013. "China's Life Satisfaction, 1990-2010," IZA Discussion Papers 7196, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    17. Knight, John & Gunatilaka, Ramani, 2010. "Great Expectations? The Subjective Well-being of Rural-Urban Migrants in China," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 113-124, January.
    18. Matthew Rabin, 1998. "Psychology and Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(1), pages 11-46, March.
    19. Paolo Mauro, 1995. "Corruption and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(3), pages 681-712.
    20. John Knight & Ramani Gunatilaka, 2011. "Does Economic Growth Raise Happiness in China?," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(1), pages 1-24.
    21. Perotti, Roberto & Alesina, Alberto, 1996. "Income Distribution, Political Instability, and Investment," Scholarly Articles 4553018, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Bartolini, Stefano & Sarracino, Francesco, 2014. "The dark side of Chinese growth: Explaining decreasing well-being in times of economic boom," MPRA Paper 57765, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Bartolini, Stefano & Sarracino, Francesco, 2015. "The Dark Side of Chinese Growth: Declining Social Capital and Well-Being in Times of Economic Boom," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 333-351.
    3. John Knight, 2015. "The Principal-Agent Problem, Economic Growth, Subjective Wellbeing and Social Instability: China’s Effective but Flawed Governance," Economics Series Working Papers 758, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    4. repec:bla:buecrs:v:68:y:2016:i:s1:p:146-170 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Stefano Bartolini, 2014. "Building sustainability through greater happiness," Department of Economics University of Siena 703, Department of Economics, University of Siena.
    6. repec:spr:soinre:v:132:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1007_s11205-015-1214-0 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    China; Developmental state; Governance; Inequality; Social instability;

    JEL classification:

    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • O20 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - General
    • O43 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Institutions and Growth
    • P26 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies - - - Political Economy

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:chieco:v:25:y:2013:i:c:p:17-26. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/chieco .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.