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Allies of the State: China's Private Entrepreneurs and Democratic Change

Author

Listed:
  • Chen, Jie

    (University of Idaho)

  • Dickson, Bruce J.

    (George Washington University)

Abstract

Jie Chen and Bruce J. Dickson draw on extensive fieldwork as they explore the extent to which China’s private sector supports democracy, surveying more than 2,000 entrepreneurs in five coastal provinces with over 70 percent of China’s private enterprises. The authors examine who the private entrepreneurs are, how the party-state shapes this group, and what their relationship to the state is. China’s entrepreneurs are closely tied to the state through political and financial relationships, and these ties shape their views toward democracy. While most entrepreneurs favor multi-candidate elections under the current one-party system, they do not support a system characterized by multi-party competition and political liberties, including the right to demonstrate. The key to regime support lies in the capitalists’ political beliefs and their assessment of the government’s policy performance. China’s capitalists tend to be conservative and status-quo oriented, not likely to serve as agents of democratization. This is a valuable contribution not only to the debates over the prospects for democracy in China but also to understanding the process of democratization around the globe.

Suggested Citation

  • Chen, Jie & Dickson, Bruce J., 2010. "Allies of the State: China's Private Entrepreneurs and Democratic Change," Economics Books, Harvard University Press, number 9780674048966, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:hup:pbooks:9780674048966
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Chun-Yi Lee, 2014. "Learning a Lesson from Taiwan? A Comparison of Changes and Continuity of Labour Policies in Taiwan and China," Journal of Current Chinese Affairs - China aktuell, Institute of Asian Studies, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies, Hamburg, vol. 43(3), pages 45-70.
    2. Feng, Xunan & Johansson, Anders C. & Zhang, Tianyu, 2014. "Political participation and entrepreneurial initial public offerings in China," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 269-285.
    3. repec:eee:jbvent:v:32:y:2017:i:4:p:405-419 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Hongjin Zhu & Toru Yoshikawa, 2016. "Contingent value of director identification: The role of government directors in monitoring and resource provision in an emerging economy," Strategic Management Journal, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 37(8), pages 1787-1807, August.
    5. Feng, Xunan & Johansson, Anders C. & Zhang, Tianyu, 2015. "Mixing business with politics: Political participation by entrepreneurs in China," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 59(C), pages 220-235.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Chinese private sector; democratization;

    JEL classification:

    • P4 - Economic Systems - - Other Economic Systems
    • O2 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy

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