IR 280 The Politics and Economy of China

Political Science Field: Associated Courses
International Relations Track: Political Economy and Development (B), Governance of Nations (C)
Typically offered every year

Jidong Chen
Spring 2015 — TR 11:05-12:20

Over the past two decades, China has experienced spectacular economic growth. Yet its institutions seem ill-suited to achieve such a result, and they suffer serious shortcomings that may hinder further development. This course provides an introduction to political institutions and economic development of China. It will focus on the fundamental institutional features of authoritarian governance in China, including: regionally decentralized authoritarianism, deliberative governance and legislative representation, civil service exam system, and rural governance and elections. We will analyze the functions of those institutional arrangements, discuss their historical origins, and make relevant comparisons with other countries. Topics regarding some on-going deep institutional transformations will also be covered, such as politics-driven urbanization, the reform of fiscal and bureaucratic hierarchy, the reform of state-owned enterprises, and the financial sector. The style of the course is half lecture and half discussion. Basic knowledge of comparative politics (PSC 101) or microeconomics (ECO 108) is desirable though not required.