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Incentivizing China's Urban Mayors to Mitigate Pollution Externalities: The Role of the Central Government and Public Environmentalism

  • Siqi Zheng
  • Matthew E. Kahn
  • Weizeng Sun
  • Danglun Luo

China's extremely high levels of urban air, water and greenhouse gas emissions levels pose local and global environmental challenges. China's urban leaders have substantial influence and discretion over the evolution of economic activity that generates such externalities. This paper examines the political economy of urban leaders' incentives to tackle pollution issues. Based on a principal-agent framework, we present evidence consistent with the hypothesis that both the central government and the public are placing pressure on China's urban leaders to mitigate externalities. Such "pro-green" incentives suggest that many of China's cities could enjoy significant environmental progress in the near future.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 18872.

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Date of creation: Mar 2013
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Publication status: published as Regional Science and Urban Economics Volume 47, July 2014, Pages 61–71 SI: Tribute to John Quigley Cover image Incentives for China's urban mayors to mitigate pollution externalities: The role of the central government and public environmentalism ☆ Siqi Zhenga, , Matthew E. Kahnb, , , Weizeng Suna, , Danglun Luoc,
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:18872
Note: EEE PE POL
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