Between Politics and Markets: Firms, Competition, and Institutional Change in Post-Mao China

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Between Politics and Markets examines how the decline of central planning in post-Mao China was related to the rise of two markets—an economic market for the exchange of products and factors, and a political market for the diversion to private interests of state assets and authorities. Lin reveals their concurrent development through an account of how industrial firms competed their way out of the plan through exchange relations with one another and with state agents.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Between Politics and Markets is an excellent book. It pushes us beyond the conventional dichotomy of state and market and, in exploring the interaction of the two, tells us a great deal about the process of economic development in China." Journal of Economic Literature

"[T]his book is a must-read for those interested in China and for those who want to better understand the process by which social structure changes more generally." American Journal of Sociology

"Between Politics and Markets makes a seminal argument about the dynamics of China's transition from a centrally planned economy to a market-oriented system...Lin's focus on the interaction of economic and political markets represents a significant challenge to existing accounts of China's economic transition." Perspectives on Politics

"Between Politics and Markets is an uncommonly sophisticated and illuminating study of the post-Mao changes in China... Lin's study would be an excellent point of reference not only for those interested in East Asian affairs but to those who are keen on comparing post-totalitarian transitions." Comparative Sociology

"Lin's intermeshing of a variety of ingenious, self-structured, useful paradigms, together with an assortment of case studies and useful macro-level information, results in a work that significantly advances our ability to understand the changes taking place in China. Professor Lin deserves strong praise for producing an excellent and fascinating work." Pacific Affairs

"In this atmosphere of renewed critical interest in China's economic prospects, no better in-depth study can be recommended....Yi-min Lin has succeeded in giving us a most valuable tool for a thorough review of institutional changes in China." China Perspectives

"Lin has produced an analytically shrewd and empirically rich study that helps explain multiple features of Chinese economic reform experiences in ways that go beyond the explanations previously available." Journal of the Cold War

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Yi-min Lin is Assistant Professor of Social Sciences at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.

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Table of Contents

List of tables and figures; Acknowledgements; Introduction; Economic market and political market; 1. Chinese factories: organization, institutional change, and performance variation; 2. Central planning and its decline; 3. Survival of the fittest in power-leveraged competition; 4. Referee as player: menaces and opportunities for industrial firms;5. Hiearchies and markets in the 'Local Inc.': a tale of two localities; 6. Favor-seeking and relational constraints; 7. Competition, economic growth and latent problems; Conclusion; Appendices.

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