IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

In search of solvency: changing agricultural governance in an ethnic minority autonomous region of southwest China


  • Yongxiang Li
  • Bryan Tilt


During the last quarter century, China's agricultural sector has undergone a dramatic transformation from collective to private production, resulting in marked improvements in quality of life for most rural citizens. However, economic development in the countryside has been highly uneven, particularly in China's southwestern region, with its arid land, rugged topography and high concentration of ethnic minority populations. Based on recent ethnographic research, this paper discusses the innovative governance strategies used by a state-owned sugar mill in a rural township in the southwestern province of Yunnan in order to survive within a changing economic environment. We argue that, despite economic liberalisation, the state – particularly at the local level – still plays a key role in mediating between farmers and the marketplace. The implications of this shifting governance structure for agricultural development in poor, minority areas and for China's nearly 800 million peasants are discussed.

Suggested Citation

  • Yongxiang Li & Bryan Tilt, 2007. "In search of solvency: changing agricultural governance in an ethnic minority autonomous region of southwest China," International Journal of Agricultural Resources, Governance and Ecology, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 6(6), pages 626-641.
  • Handle: RePEc:ids:ijarge:v:6:y:2007:i:6:p:626-641

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

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


    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:ids:ijarge:v:6:y:2007:i:6:p:626-641. 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: (Darren Simpson). General contact details of provider: .

    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.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using 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.