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Neoliberalization and the Changing Roles of Stakeholders in State-Led Shantytown Redevelopment in Shenyang City, China


  • Li, Xin

    (Delft University of Technology)

  • Kleinhans, Reinout

    (Delft University of Technology)

  • van Ham, Maarten

    (Delft University of Technology)


Neoliberal politics in China have changed the roles of, and the interrelationships between, the state, the market and society in urban restructuring. Since 2008, the central state has initiated the Shantytown Redevelopment Projects (SRPs) to improve the living conditions of low-income residents. Between 2008 and 2012, about 12.6 million households were involved in these national SRPs, and forced to move as their dwellings were demolished. This paper investigates how different stakeholders perceive and interact with each other in the state-led SRPs in Shenyang City in Northeast China. Through in-depth interviews with a range of stakeholders and analysis of policy documentation on SRPs, we find that there is a complex interplay between centralization, decentralization, marginalization of market forces, and the empowerment of residents in SRPs. The central government has replaced local governments in the initiation of redevelopment projects in disadvantaged neighbourhoods. District-level governments have replaced developers and municipal governments in land expropriation. Developers have become marginalized in SRPs and residents have become more empowered in the land expropriation taking place in urban redevelopment.

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  • Li, Xin & Kleinhans, Reinout & van Ham, Maarten, 2016. "Neoliberalization and the Changing Roles of Stakeholders in State-Led Shantytown Redevelopment in Shenyang City, China," IZA Discussion Papers 10141, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10141

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Jie Chen & Zan Yang & Ya Ping Wang, 2014. "The New Chinese Model of Public Housing: A Step Forward or Backward?," Housing Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 29(4), pages 534-550, June.
    2. You-Ren Yang & Chih-hui Chang, 2007. "An Urban Regeneration Regime in China: A Case Study of Urban Redevelopment in Shanghai's Taipingqiao Area," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 44(9), pages 1809-1826, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Li, Xin & Kleinhans, Reinout & van Ham, Maarten, 2017. "Ambivalence in Place Attachment: The Lived Experiences of Residents in Declining Neighbourhoods Facing Demolition in Shenyang, China," IZA Discussion Papers 10515, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).

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    More about this item


    Shantytown redevelopment; neoliberalization; governance; demolition; China;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • O18 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure
    • R23 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population

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