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The low degree of institutionalization of Chinese administration means that citizens engaging with the bureaucracy have a choice of strategies to get things done. This article deploys Asia Barometer survey data from 2006 to construct a predictive model of preferences between strategies to obtain a government permit, including use of connections (guanxi), bribery, writing letters, waiting patiently, and the passive-pessimistic response “nothing can be done”. It finds that strategy preference varies according to location (city or county interacting with region), socio-economic status, social capital, political values and political performance evaluations. The pattern of determinants shows that Chinese citizens are cross-pressured. The class and gender nature of guanxi and bribery are an obstacle to the creation of a modern Chinese state, but high levels of social trust, support for political freedom, the market and meritocracy combined with the reservoir of trust enjoyed by executive organs present a favourable climate for efforts to improve governance.
|Glasgow Author(s):||Munro, Dr Neil|
|Subjects:||J Political Science > JA Political science (General)|
J Political Science > JQ Political institutions Asia
|College/School:||College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Politics|
|Journal Name:||China Journal|
|Publisher:||Contemporary China Centre|