Dispersed Domination through Patron-Clientelism: The Evolution of the Local State–NGO Relationship in Post-Disaster Sichuan

Yi KANG*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study is based on 10 years of ethnography research in six cities in Sichuan after the Wenchuan earthquake. The author delineates local officials’ dispersed clientelist endeavours seeking stable collaboration with NGOs. In contrast to the corporatism model, in which government control of NGOs is formal and from the top down, the patron–client relationship entails considerably more subjectivity, flexibility and dispersion in the exercise of state power, which may or may not result in effective implementation of the state’s policy objectives. As local government officials increasingly deploy their informal authority in addition to their extensive institutional power, and as informal networks lubricate the policy process, state dominance over society becomes more pervasive, entrenched and fragmented.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)598-613
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Contemporary China
Volume29
Issue number124
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jul 2020

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Development
  • Political Science and International Relations

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