East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society

November 25, 2019
by linzhuoli
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(Nov. 25) Matthew Kahn, “Air Pollution Progress in Urban China” and “Ghost Towns and China’s High Speed Rail”

EAST ASIA WORKSHOP: POLITICS, ECONOMY & SOCIETY Presents

 

“Air Pollution Progress in Urban China” 

and

“Ghost Towns and China’s High Speed Rail” 

Matthew Kahn

Professor of Economics and Business

John Hopkins University

 

 

Nov. 25th, Mon 4:30-6:00 pm

Tea Room, Social Science Research Building (2nd floor).

Refreshment will be provided

 

 

Abstract

Air Pollution Progress in Urban China

Using city level panel data from China covering fifteen years, this paper describes trends in ambient particulate matter across three types of cities.  Using data on each city’s population, the paper then describes the population’s exposure to air pollution in the base year and the final year of the study.  In the final section of the paper, several hypotheses are tested for explaining the observed pollution dynamics.


Ghost Towns and China’s High Speed Rail

The Chinese Central Government has spent billions of dollars on High Speed Rail extending these lines deep into the periphery of major cities. The Western Media (see the New York Times

https://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/20/business/global/20ghost.html) has declared that these sunk investments have often been wasteful as “Ghost Cities” have emerged that feature infrastructure and housing towers but no people.  This paper uses the investment under uncertainty framework from economics and finance to model the “option value” of constructing such Ghost Cities.  We use a novel source of Big Data to measure when such towns become more lively featuring people and economic activity.   Using basic ideas from urban economics, we form hypotheses concerning under what economic conditions do such Ghost Town options activate and become thriving small cities.

* Subscribe  to our workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

* Abstract or description of each presentation will be posted on our website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia

* Questions and comments can be addressed to the student coordinators Yuchen Yang: yucheny@uchicago.edu and Linzhuo Li: linzhuoli@uchicago.edu

*Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinators in advance.

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences.

Attachments area

 

Kahn, Matthew – Air Pollution Progress in Urban China + Ghost Towns and China’s High Speed Rail

November 15, 2019
by linzhuoli
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(Nov. 18) Liping Wang, “Collective Belonging or Individual Calling: Language and Ethnic Identity of Ethnic Minorities in China”

EAST ASIA WORKSHOP: POLITICS, ECONOMY & SOCIETY Presents

 

“Collective Belonging or Individual Calling: Language and Ethnic Identity of Ethnic Minorities in China” 

Liping Wang

Graduate School of Education, Peking University

(UChicago Sociology Alumna)

 

 

Nov. 18th, Mon 4:30-6:00 pm

Tea Room, Social Science Research Building (2nd floor).

Refreshment will be provided

 

 

Abstract

Minority education in contemporary China consists of two systems: a bilingual education system that greatly emphasizes the ethnic minority language, and a monolingual Chinese education system. These two linguistic-education programs have significant influence on self-identity. This paper, which is based on 57 in-depth interviews conducted with those who identify as Mongols, Tibetans and Uighurs, examines the distinct conceptions of ethnicity held by ethnic-language educated and Chinese educated minorities, and their distinct paths of ethnic identity formation. Members from both groups can develop a strong ethnic identity. However, the former are less confident than their Chinese-educated peers in striving towards academic and professional achievements, but more competent in mastering their ethnic language. Language is central to their self-knowledge, which is nurtured in community life and conferred by their ancestors. They revere tradition and have moral pride in preserving their ethnic culture. In contrast, the Chinese-educated ethnic minorities often view ethnicity as an individual calling. Their ethnic consciousness is enhanced through reflective learning, not communal participation. Language has an important, but not central position in their knowledge of ethnicity. They do not inherit, but acquire, their ethnic identity by questioning and struggling with it. Education experiences largely explain for the divergence.

* Subscribe  to our workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

* Abstract or description of each presentation will be posted on our website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia

* Questions and comments can be addressed to the student coordinators Yuchen Yang: yucheny@uchicago.edu and Linzhuo Li: linzhuoli@uchicago.edu

*Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinators in advance.

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences.

 

Wang, Liping – Collective Belonging or Individual Calling

October 30, 2019
by linzhuoli
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(Oct.30)Junyan Jiang, “Countering Capture: Elite Networks and Government Responsiveness in China’s Land Market Reform”

EAST ASIA WORKSHOP: POLITICS, ECONOMY & SOCIETY Presents

 

“Countering Capture: Elite Networks and Government Responsiveness in China’s Land Market Reform” 

Junyan Jiang

Assistant Professor, Department of Government and Public Administration, Chinese University of Hong Kong

 

 

Oct. 30th, Wed 4:00-5:30 pm [SPECIAL DATE & New Time]

Tea Room, Social Science Research Building (2nd floor).

Refreshments will be provided

 

 

Abstract

Government responsiveness is often viewed as a result of political pressure from the public, but why do politicians facing similar pressure sometimes differ in their responsiveness? This article considers the configurations of elite networks as a key mediating factor. We argue that access to external support networks helps improve politicians’ responsiveness to ordinary citizens by reducing their dependence on vested interests, and test this claim using China’s land market reform as a case. Leveraging novel city-level measures of mass grievances and political networks, we demonstrate that the intensity of land-related grievances is on average positively associated with reform occurrence, but this association is only salient among a subset of city leaders who enjoy informal connections to the higher-level authority. We also show that connected leaders tend to implement policies less congruent with local bureaucratic and business interests. These findings underscore the importance of intra-elite dynamics in shaping mass-elite interactions.

Bio

Junyan Jiang is Assistant Professor at the Department of Government and Public Administration, the Chinese University of Hong Kong. His research interests include elite politics, public opinion, and mass-elite interactions, with a regional focus on China. His work has appeared in journals such as American Journal of Political ScienceComparative Political StudiesGovernanceJournal of Politics, and Political Research Quarterly. He received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Chicago and was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pennsylvania between 2016 and 2017.

* Subscribe  to our workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

* Abstract or description of each presentation will be posted on our website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia

* Questions and comments can be addressed to the student coordinators Yuchen Yang: yucheny@uchicago.edu and Linzhuo Li: linzhuoli@uchicago.edu

*Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinators in advance.

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences.

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October 21, 2019
by linzhuoli
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(Oct. 21) Lida Nedilsky, “The Liberalizing Role of Hong Kong Startups in Religion and Politics”

EAST ASIA WORKSHOP: POLITICS, ECONOMY & SOCIETY Presents

 

“The Liberalizing Role of Hong Kong Startups in Religion and Politics” 

Lida Nedilsky

Professor of Sociology, North Park University

 

 

Oct. 21st, Mon 4:30-6:00 pm

Tea Room, Social Science Research Building (2nd floor).

Refreshment will be provided

Professor Nedilsky has shared the full paper (see attached) to encourage further discussion and debate.

Nedilsky, Lida – The Liberalizing Role of Hong Kong Startups in Religion and Politics

Lida Nedilsky – The Liberalizing Role of Hong Kong Startups in Religion and Politics

Abstract

Since the territory’s return to Chinese sovereignty, Hong Kong’s executive branch has sought ways to control a relatively free-market society. Dispatching riot police to break up flash mobs from June through August 2019 is one vivid example. Acting as a source of consensual politics is another. In this essay I document a rival to control: the persistent presence of both religious and political startups in Hong Kong’s organizational marketplace. As vehicles of innovation, startups –those entrepreneurial efforts to respond to missed opportunities by fulfilling demands of an untapped market– ought to attract attention in a city with Hong Kong’s global reputation for business. These are the Christian nongovernmental organizations and political parties that populate its public sphere and dislodge the state-society fixity assumed necessary for efficient and stable governance. By placing Christian religious culture in the context of the wider Hong Kong culture I cast it in a new light: one that reveals how Christian entrepreneurialism, like political entrepreneurialism, performs a liberalizing role in Hong Kong.

Bio

Lida V. Nedilsky, Professor of Sociology at North Park University, focuses her research on the intersection of religious and political cultures in Chinese societies. Most recently, she collaborated with historian Joseph Tse-hei Lee of Pace University on a special issue of China Information (July 2019) exploring marginalization in China today. Along with guest-editing, they authored “Marginalization as creative endeavour,” an article spotlighting the innovative possibilities that come with existing on the margins of society –including the margins of academic community and enterprise.

* Subscribe  to our workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia

* Abstract or description of each presentation will be posted on our website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia

* Questions and comments can be addressed to the student coordinators Yuchen Yang: yucheny@uchicago.edu and Linzhuo Li: linzhuoli@uchicago.edu

*Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinators in advance.

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences.

 

 

 

October 6, 2019
by linzhuoli
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Oct. 7(Monday)|Zeyang Yu, “The Last Strike: Evaluating the Distortionary Effect of Career Incentives on Taxation in China”

EAST ASIA WORKSHOP: POLITICS, ECONOMY & SOCIETY Presents
“The Last Strike: Evaluating the Distortionary Effect of Career Incentives on Taxation in China”

Zeyang Yu

Department of Political Science, University of Chicago

Oct. 7th, Mon 4:30-6:00 pm
Tea Room, Social Science Research Building (2nd floor).
Refreshment will be provided
Abstract
This paper analyzes the distortionary effect of political career incentives on fiscal extraction. We argue that competitive promotion tournaments distort public officials’ career incentives, leading to excessive tax extraction efforts. We empirically estimate the magnitude of distortion by exploiting two institutional designs for political selection in China: the age threshold for promotion and regulated term limits. We find that a promotion tournament becomes more intense when prefectural party leaders enter their last promotion-eligible term (at 50-55 years old). Given fierce competition for career advancement, prefectural party leaders extract excessive fiscal revenue to demonstrate their competence, but they do not enhance economic performance or redistribution efforts.
Bio
Zeyang Yu is a third year PhD student at political science department. His research interests lie broadly in causal inference and their applications in empirical political economy.
 
* Subscribe  to our workshop mailing-list at: https://lists.uchicago.edu/web/info/east-asia
* Abstract or description of each presentation will be posted on our website: http://cas.uchicago.edu/workshops/eastasia
* Questions and comments can be addressed to the student coordinators Yuchen Yang: yucheny@uchicago.edu and Linzhuo Li:linzhuoli@uchicago.edu
*Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinators in advance. 
The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences

 

 

May 23, 2017
by yxz
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May 30, In Hyee Hwang, “Perceived Threat and Welfare Distribution in Rural China”

East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society presents
 

 Perceived Threat and Welfare Distribution in Rural China”

 
In Hyee Hwang
PhD candidate, Department of Political Science
University of Chicago
 
4:30-6:00 p.m., Tuesday, May 30, 2017
Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Ave.
*Light refreshments will be served*
Abstract
During the past decade, China has experienced an expansion of social welfare benefits in the absence of political reform. However, despite the rapid development of social welfare policies, access to such welfare benefits still vary widely between, as well as within provinces in China. What explains this disparity in the provision of welfare benefits? Who receives benefits to welfare, when, and how in China? 
Existing theories on welfare state development have focused on the effects of industrialism, democratization, class struggle, and varieties of capitalism. However, I argue that the Chinese Communist Party has implemented specific social policies against perceived threats in order to secure regime stability and survival. I test this argument by using 2008 individual-level survey data on land expropriation and in-depth interviews of local officials, village cadres, land developers, and villagers. I find that the expansion of rural pension benefits is closely associated with the local governments’ perception of threat to social stability. In close-knit rural areas with high levels of interpersonal exchange, the perception of threat depends on the target of the collective action more than its magnitude; to whom public demands were made affects perceptions of threat more than the number of participants involved in collective claim-making. Individuals in communities with a history of collective incidents are also more likely to receive pension benefits. 
About the Speaker
In Hyee Hwang is a PhD Candidate in the Political Science Department at the University of Chicago. Her research interests focus on welfare state development, authoritarian redistribution, and comparative studies on East Asian Politics.
*To learn more about the workshop and see the full Spring 2017 schedule, please visit: Spring Schedule
Faculty sponsors:
Xi Song (Sociology),  Dali Yang (Political Science),  and Dingxin Zhao (Sociology)

The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

May 8, 2017
by yxz
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May 16, Di Zhou, “How Chinese new immigrants become Trump supporters? Revisiting theories of political resocialization in the context of 2016 Presidential Election on Zhihu (the “Chinese Quora”)”

East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society presents

 

 How Chinese new immigrants become Trump supporters?  

Revisiting theories of political resocialization in the context of 2016 Presidential Election on Zhihu (the “Chinese Quora”)

 

Di Zhou

MAPSS student, Social Science Division

University of Chicago

4:30-6:00 p.m., Tuesday, March 16, 2017

Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Ave.

*Light refreshments will be served*

Abstract

How do first-generation immigrants and migrants adapt to a new political environment, learn to form political ideas, and participate in politics? How could a group of new immigrants and migrants become passionate Trump supporters despite Trump’s blatant anti-immigration messages? Answers to these questions require a revisit to current scholarship on political resocialization for new immigrants. The case in spotlight, the Chinese Trump supporters in the U.S., is a vivid example of how prior political knowledge can interact with exposures to both the U.S. mainstream media and an ethnic social network – Zhihu (the “Chinese Quora”). In this thesis project, I interviewed Trump supporters (and those debated with them) who are foreign-born Chinese immigrants (now U.S. citizens or green card holders) and migrants (with working or student visas). Their recent relocation from China to the U.S. and their active political expression during the 2016 general election provides a great chance to study the interactive effect between one’s prior political knowledge and their exposure to different information sources as they are embedded in multiple physical and virtual social networks.

In the workshop, I will engage with studies on new immigrants in the U.S., theories of political resocialization and studies on political communication, and present preliminary findings on 32 interviews with Chinese new immigrants and migrants who were involved in the online debate about the 2016 Presidential Election on Zhihu.

About the Speaker

Di Zhou is a MAPSS student concentrated in Sociology at the University of Chicago. She is interested in political sociology, political socialization and digital communication.

*To see the full Spring 2017 schedule, please visit: Spring schedule

 

Faculty sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology), Dali Yang (Political Science), and Dingxin Zhao (Sociology)


The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

 

 

April 24, 2017
by yxz
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May 2, Elena Obukhova, “Switching sides: Market transition and job-referring in China”

East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society presents

 

 “Switching sides: Market transition and job-referring in China”

 

Elena Obukhova

Assistant Professor, Desautels Faculty of Management

McGill University

4:30-6:00 p.m., Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Ave.

*Light refreshments will be served*

Abstract

The existing research on referrers, or those who pass of information about job opportunities to potential job-seekers, poses an important question: when do referrers refer in the interests of their employer (the demand side) as opposed to the interests of their family and friends (the supply side)?  To answer this question we examine how market development shapes job-referring behavior.  Using a large-scale nationally representative dataset with a unique module on job-referring behavior, we show that the transition from a planned to a market economy in China is associated with a decline in job-referring in the interests of family and friends.  Additional analyses reveal that the development of formal labor market intermediaries that act as substitutes for job-referrals is one mechanism that accounts for this decline.  Our results have implications for our understanding of a) conflicting roles of job-referrers and b) labor market networks in transition economies.

About the Speaker

Elena Obukhova is an Assistant Professor in Strategy and Organization at the Desautels Faculty of Management of McGill University. Her research investigates when and how social networks benefit individuals and organizations, with a particular focus on China. Her studies tackle these questions by developing unique datasets primarily through the use of survey methods. Professor Obukhova was trained as an economic sociologist at the University of Chicago. Her work has appeared in American Journal of Sociology, Management Science, Social Forces, and other journals. She is a recipient of Fullbright-Hays Fellowship from the U.S. Department of Education and two Fellowships from the Social Science Research Council. A native of Russia, Professor Obukhova is professionally fluent in Mandarin and has been conducting research in China since 1995. At McGill, she is a co-organizer of Social Networks Working Group.

* To learn more about the workshop and see the full Spring 2017 schedule, please visit: Spring Schedule

Faculty sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology), Dali Yang(Political Science) and Dingxin Zhao (Sociology)


The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

 

 

April 19, 2017
by yxz
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April 25, Ian Johnson, “The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao”

East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society presents

in partnership with The Seminary Co-op Bookstores

 “The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao”

Ian Johnson

Pulitzer-Prize Winning Writer

Accredited China correspondent for The New York Times

6:00-7:30 p.m., Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Seminary Co-op Bookstore, 5751 S. Woodlawn Ave.

About the Book

The Souls of China: The Return of Religion After Mao (Pantheon/Knopf in the US and Penguin in the UK, both on April 11, 2017) tells the story of one of the world’s great spiritual revivals. Following a century of violent anti-religious campaigns, China is now filled with new temples, churches and mosques–as well as cults, sects and politicians trying to harness religion for their own ends. Driving this explosion of faith is uncertainty–over what it means to be Chinese, and how to live an ethical life in a country that discarded traditional morality a century ago and is still searching for new guideposts.

About the Author

Ian Johnson is a Pulitzer-Prize winning writer focusing on society, religion, and history. He works out of Beijing and Berlin, where he also teaches and advises academic journals and think tanks.

* To see the full Spring 2017 schedule, please visit: Spring Schedule

Faculty sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology),  Dali Yang (Political Science),  and Dingxin Zhao (Sociology)


The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

 

 

April 16, 2017
by yxz
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April 18, Li Dong, “Paths to Professionalization: Medical and legal experts in early twentieth-century China.”

East Asia Workshop: Politics, Economy and Society presents

 Paths to Professionalization: Medical and legal experts in early twentieth-century China.”

Li Dong

PhD student, Department of Sociology

University of Chicago

4:30-6:00 p.m., Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Pick Lounge, 5828 South University Ave.

*Light refreshments will be served*

Abstract

During this workshop session, I will be discussing my dissertation project. It is a comparative study of the emergence of two modern professions, law and medicine, in late Qing and early Republican China. As my work attempts to identify and explain the causes for two distinct models of professionalization in a late-developing context, it will touch upon issues such as the rise of university education in China, the early waves of Chinese students studying abroad, the first Chinese professional associations, the efforts towards state building in law and healthcare, and the various forms of professional competition.

About the Speakers

Li Dong is a 5th year PhD student in the Department of Sociology at University of Chicago. He is interested in sociology of professions and organizational studies, among others.

* To see the full Spring 2017 schedule, please visit: Spring Schedule

 

Faculty sponsors:

Xi Song (Sociology),  Dali Yang (Political Science),  and Dingxin Zhao (Sociology)


The East Asia Workshop is sponsored by the Council on Advanced Studies in Humanities and Social Sciences. Persons with disabilities who believe they may need assistance please contact the student coordinator in advance.

 

 

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