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The Economic Causes and Consequences of Social Instability in China

  • John Knight

Social instability 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 concerns 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.� This paper examines the likely economic determinants of social instability, using both surveys and other evidence.� After explaining 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.

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File URL: http://www.economics.ox.ac.uk/materials/papers/12212/paper619.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Oxford, Department of Economics in its series Economics Series Working Papers with number 619.

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Date of creation: 03 Sep 2012
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Handle: RePEc:oxf:wpaper:619
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Web page: http://www.economics.ox.ac.uk/
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  1. Nauro F. Campos & Jeffrey B. Nugent, 2000. "Who is Afraid of Political Instability?," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 326, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  2. Paul Frijters & Amy Y.C. Liu & Xin Meng, 2008. "Are optimistic expectations keeping the Chinese happy?," NCER Working Paper Series 37, National Centre for Econometric Research.
  3. Roubini, Nouriel & Swagel, Phillip & Ozler, Sule & Alesina, Alberto, 1996. "Political Instability and Economic Growth," Scholarly Articles 4553024, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  4. Ari Aisen & Francisco José Veiga, 2010. "How does political instability affect economic growth?," NIPE Working Papers 5/2010, NIPE - Universidade do Minho.
  5. Mauro, Paolo, 1995. "Corruption and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(3), pages 681-712, August.
  6. John Knight & Linda Yueh, 2002. "The Role of Social Capital in the Labour Market in China," Economics Series Working Papers 121, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  7. Song, Lina & Appleton, Simon, 2008. "Life Satisfaction in Urban China: Components and Determinants," IZA Discussion Papers 3443, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Knight, John & Ding, Sai, 2012. "China's Remarkable Economic Growth," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199698691, March.
  9. Matthew Rabin., 1997. "Psychology and Economics," Economics Working Papers 97-251, University of California at Berkeley.
  10. Alberto Alesina & Roberto Perotti, 1993. "Income Distribution, Political Instability, and Investment," NBER Working Papers 4486, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. 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.
  12. Paul Collier & Anke Hoeffler, 2004. "Greed and Grievance in Civil War," Development and Comp Systems 0409007, EconWPA.
  13. Perotti, Roberto, 1996. " Growth, Income Distribution, and Democracy: What the Data Say," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 1(2), pages 149-87, June.
  14. Alesina, Alberto, et al, 1996. " Political Instability and Economic Growth," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 1(2), pages 189-211, June.
  15. 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).
  16. Perotti, Roberto & Alesina, Alberto, 1996. "Income Distribution, Political Instability, and Investment," Scholarly Articles 4553018, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  17. 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.
  18. William Easterly & Jozef Ritzen & Michael Woolcock, 2006. "Social Cohesion, Institutions, And Growth," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 18(2), pages 103-120, 07.
  19. John Knight & Deng Quheng and Li Shi, 2010. "The Puzzle of Migrant Labour Shortage and Rural Labour Surplus in China," Economics Series Working Papers 494, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  20. 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.
  21. John Knight & Ramani Gunatilaka, 2011. "Does Economic Growth Raise Happiness in China?," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(1), pages 1-24.
  22. John Knight & Ramani Gunatilaka, 2007. "Great Expectations? The Subjective Well-Being of Rural-Urban Migrants in China," Economics Series Working Papers 322, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
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