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  • Author: Sandra Heep
  • Publication Date: 09-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: Against the backdrop of China's increasingly influential role in global finance and the debate on the emergence of a “Beijing Consensus,” this paper examines whether the ideology that China promotes in the Bretton Woods institutions is conducive to the initiation of financial policy change at the international level. Drawing on Barnett and Duvall's (2005) conceptualization of productive power, Snow and Benford's (1988) framing theory and Freeden's (1996) understanding of ideology, the paper develops a theoretical framework for the analysis of international policy framing. Following an overview of China's rise in global finance, it identifies the core elements of the ideology that has been promoted by Chinese government officials in the Bretton Woods institutions since the onset of the global financial crisis. The paper argues that China's ruling elites will only be able to initiate a shift in the global consensus on acceptable financial policies if the frames that they propagate succeed in striking a balance between ideological continuity and change.
  • Topic: Communism, Economics, International Trade and Finance, Monetary Policy
  • Political Geography: China, Israel
  • Author: Ka Ho Mok, Gengua Hueng
  • Publication Date: 11-2013
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: China's welfare system is a typical “residual welfare regime”, which did not manifest too many flaws in the planned economy era. However, economic reform and market-oriented transformations in recent decades have shaken the original well-balanced “residual” and “needs” pattern. The decline of the “work unit system” has led to two consequences: First, it radically transformed the social and economic structures, which gave rise to increased and diversified needs of social welfare. Second, the government is being pressed to shoulder more responsibility for social welfare provisions. This article adopts a case study approach to examine changing social welfare needs and expectations in Guangzhou, a relatively developed city in southern China. With particular focus on the major strategies adopted by the Guangzhou government in addressing people's welfare needs, this article critically examines how far the new measures have met the changing welfare expectations of citizens in mainland China.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: China, Guangzhou
  • Author: David Shim, Patrick Flamm
  • Publication Date: 07-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: South Korea’s rising status in regional and global affairs has received much attention in recent years. But in academic, media and policy debates South Korea is usually regarded as a mere middle power that, due to its geopolitical situation, has only limited leeway in its foreign policy. Accordingly, it must constantly maneuver between its larger neighbors: China, Japan and Russia. However, this perspective neglects the fact that the same geopolitical constraint also applies to other states in the region. No country can easily project its power over others. We use the concept of “regional power” as a template to discuss South Korea’s rising stature in regional and global politics. We argue that Seoul seems quite capable of keeping up with other assumed regional powers. Hence, we not only provide a novel account of South Korea’s foreign policy options but also go beyond current approaches by asking about the (undetermined) possibilities for Seoul’s regional relations.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Economics, Power Politics
  • Political Geography: Russia, Japan, China, Israel, South Korea
  • Author: Hugo Dobson
  • Publication Date: 11-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: As a result of the emergence of the G20 as the self‐appointed “premier forum for international economic cooperation”, Asia's expanded participation in G‐summitry has attracted considerable attention. As original G7 member Japan is joined by Australia, China, Indonesia, India and South Korea, this has given rise to another alphanumeric configuration of the Asian 6 (A6). Resulting expectations are that membership in the G20 will impact Asian regionalism as the A6 are forced into coordination and cooperation in response to the G20's agenda and commitments. However, by highlighting the concrete behaviours and motivations of the individual A6 in the G20 summits so far, this paper stands in contrast to the majority of the predominantly normative extant literature. It highlights divergent agendas amongst the A6 as regards the future of the G20 and discusses the high degree of competition over their identities and roles therein. This divergence and competition can be seen across a range of other behaviours including responding to the norm of internationalism in promoting global governance and maintaining the status quo and national interest, in addition to claiming a regional leadership role and managing bilateral relationships with the US.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets, Globalization, International Trade and Finance, Regional Cooperation, Governance
  • Political Geography: United States, Japan, China, Indonesia, India, Asia, South Korea, Australia
  • Author: Laurence Marfaing, Alena Thiel
  • Publication Date: 11-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: Since the beginning of the twenty‐first century, Africa has seen the arrival of a new form of Chinese migration. Largely independent from big Chinese players, these “new entrepreneurial migrants” come to Africa not as workers in the highly prestigious state projects, but rather to follow their own economic interests. Engaging in business activities as diverse as petty manufacturing, printing, pharmaceutical and medical services, restaurants, beauty salons and last but not least, general trade, these independent Chinese migrants are often acknowledged for bringing affordable new commercial services and goods to low‐income households on the African continent. On the other hand, the high visibility of the Chinese entrepreneurial activities has also sparked anti‐Chinese sentiments among many African entrepreneurs.
  • Topic: Economics, Imperialism, International Trade and Finance, Markets
  • Political Geography: Africa, China, Ghana
  • Author: Heike Holbig, Bruce Gilley
  • Publication Date: 03-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: The contemporary politics of China reflect an ongoing effort by the ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to claim the right to rule in light of the consequences of economic development, international pressures, and historical change. China stands out within the Asian region for the success the regime has achieved in this effort. By focusing on the changes in China elite discourse during the reform period and particularly during the last decade, this paper aims to elaborate on the relative importance of various sources of legitimacy as they shift over time, as well as on their inherent dilemmas and limitations. There is evidence of an agile, responsive, and creative party effort to relegitimate the post-revolutionary regime through economic performance, nationalism, ideology, culture, governance, and democracy. At the same time, the paper identifies a clear shift in emphasis from an earlier economic‐nationalistic approach to a more ideological-institutional approach.
  • Topic: Communism, Development, Economics, Politics
  • Political Geography: China, Asia
  • Author: Dirk Kohnert
  • Publication Date: 07-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: The remarkable influx of Chinese migrant entrepreneurs in West Africa has been met with growing resistance from established African entrepreneurs. Whether the former have a competitive edge over the latter because of distinctive sociocultural traits or whether the Chineseʹ s supposed effectiveness is just a characteristic feature of any trading diaspora is open to question. This comparative exploratory study of Chinese and Nigerian entrepreneurial migrants in Ghana and Benin provides initial answers to these questions. Apparently, the cultural stimuli for migrant drivers of change are not restricted to inherited value systems or religions, such as a Protestant ethic or Confucianism; rather, they are continually adapted and invented anew by transnational migration networks in a globalized world. There is no evidence of the supposed superiority of the innovative culture of Chinese entrepreneurial migrants versus that of African entrepreneurial migrants. Rather, there exist trading diasporas which have a generally enhanced innovative capacity vis‐à‐vis local entrepreneurs, regardless of the national culture in which they are embedded. In addition, the rivalry of Chinese and Nigerian migrant entrepreneurs in African markets does not necessarily lead to the often suspected cut‐throat competition. Often the actions of each group are complementary to those of the other. Under certain conditions they even contribute to poverty alleviation in the host country.
  • Topic: Economics, Markets, Migration
  • Political Geography: Africa, China
  • Author: Robert Kappel
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: As the conception of and debates on regional powers have been led by political science, this paper aims to contribute to the discussion from an economics perspective. Based on the discussion of different concepts of economic power—such as those of Schumpeter, Perroux, Predöhl, or Kindleberger—concepts of technological leadership, and the global value chain approaches, the paper develops a research framework for the economics of regional powers. This framework is then tested using descriptive statistics as well as regressions analysis, with a focus on the four regional powers Brazil, China, India, and South Africa. As economic power is relational, the relationship of regional powers to other nations in the region is analyzed.
  • Topic: Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Africa, China, India, South Africa, Brazil, Latin America
  • Author: Robert Kappel
  • Publication Date: 09-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: A number of regional powers are becoming important international actors and are changing the coordinates of world politics and the global economy. The political and economicshift in favor of these regional powers has been accompanied by the relative loss of importance of the US, Japan, and the EU. The latter countries are increasingly challenged by the economic growth and the geostrategical actions of the regional powers. As the conception of and debates on regional powers have been led by political science, this paper aims to contribute to the discussion from an economics perspective. Based on the discussion of different concepts of economic power–such as those of Schumpeter, Perroux, Predöhl, or Kindleberger–concepts of technological leadership, and the global value chain approaches, the paper develops a research framework for the economics of regional powers. This framework is then tested using descriptive statistics as well as regressions analysis, with a focus on the four regional powers Brazil, China, India, and South Africa. As economic power is relational, the relationship of regional powers to other nations in the region is analyzed. According to the findings, only limited conclusions on the economics of regional powers are possible: a regional power can be described as an economy with a relatively large population and land area which plays a dominant role in trade within the region and in the regional governance. The regional power develops its technological capacities, and its businesses act regionally and globally with increasing strength.
  • Topic: International Relations, Economics, Globalization, International Political Economy, Power Politics
  • Political Geography: China, India, Brazil
  • Author: Günter Moser
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: The quality of statistical data covering the economic and social development of the People's Republic of China has been questioned by international and national data users for years. The reasons for this doubt lie mainly in the structure of the Chinese system of statistics. Two parallel systems exist which operate largely autonomously: the national system of statistics and the sectoral system of statistics. In the area of the national statistical system, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has the authority to order and collect statistics. This competence lies with the ministries and authorities below the ministerial level. This article describes and analyses these structures, the resulting problems, and the reform measures taken to date. It also aims to provide a better understanding of the statistical data about the People's Republic of China and to enable an assessment of them within a changing structural context. In conclusion, approaches to further reforms will be provided based on the author's long-standing experience in cooperation projects with the official Chinese statistics agencies.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: China
  • Author: Heike Holbig
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: Two decades after the predicted “end of ideology”, we are observing a re-emphasis on party ideology under Hu Jintao. The paper looks into the reasons for and the factors shaping the re-formulation of the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP) ideology since 2002 and assesses the progress and limits of this process. Based on the analysis of recent elite debates, it is argued that the re making of ideology has been the consequence of perceived challenges to the legitimacy of CCP rule. Contrary to many Western commentators, who see China's successful economic performance as the most important if not the only source of regime legitimacy, Chinese party theorists and scholars have come to regard Deng Xiaoping's formula of performance-based legitimacy as increasingly precarious. In order to tackle the perceived “performance dilemma” of party rule, the adaptation and innovation of party ideology is regarded as a crucial measure to relegitimize CCP rule.
  • Topic: Economics
  • Political Geography: China
  • Author: Karl Hallding, Guoyi Han, Marie Olsson
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: China is undergoing modernization at a scale and speed the world has never witnessed. As climate change increasingly dominates the global agenda, China faces the challenge of shaping a new growth path in a climate-constrained world. The paper argues that China's current climate and energy policy is, at best, a “repackaging” of existing energy and environmental strategies with co-benefits for the mitigation of climate change. Nevertheless, even though policies are not climate-change driven, the quick (rhetorical) endorsement of low-carbon development and the strong momentum of green technologies indicate that political ambitions are in favour of finding a more sustainable development pathway. A new growth path would, how-ever, require a fundamental shift, with development and energy strategies being set within climate security constraints. The eventual success of this new path remains uncertain.
  • Topic: Security, Climate Change, Economics, Environment
  • Political Geography: China
  • Author: Andreas Oberheitmann, Eva Sternfeld
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: According to the IPCC's Fourth Assessment Report, global emissions of carbon dioxide have to be reduced by about 80 per cent by 2050 in order to stabilise the increase in global temperature at 2 to 2.4°C by 2100 compared with its pre-industrial level. An increase of only 2°C would bring about “acceptable” negative impacts on the eco-systems and the world economy. Without a reduction in CO2 emissions in China, however, it will be hard to achieve this goal. Currently, China is already responsible for about 50 per cent of the worldwide increase in CO2 emissions recorded over the past ten years. On the other hand, it is the industrialised countries that are mainly responsible for the greenhouse-gas emissions of earlier years. Taking the challenges of China's economic growth, its impact on future CO2 emissions and the development of China's climate policy into account, this article develops a new post-Kyoto regime based on cumulative per-capita emission rights.
  • Topic: Economics, Environment
  • Political Geography: China
  • Author: Margot Schüller, Yun Schüllerr-Zhou
  • Publication Date: 12-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: This contribution analyses the impact of the global financial crisis on the Chinese economy and the policies implemented by the Chinese government to cope with it. We argue, first, that China has not been able to decouple its economic performance from that of the U.S. and other developed countries. Second, although economic growth in the second quarter of 2009 showed that the stimulus package is working, the current development does not seem to be sustainable. In order to avoid another round of overheating, the government needs to adjust its stimulus policy. Third, the current crisis offers opportunities to conduct necessary structural adjustments in favour of more market-based and innovative industries, more investment by private companies and a stronger role of private consumption in economic growth. Fourth, with the external demand from the OECD countries declining, Chinese export companies need to further diversify their international markets and re-orient their production and sales strategies to some extent towards the domestic market.
  • Topic: Economics, Government, Financial Crisis
  • Political Geography: United States, China
  • Author: Gunter Schucher, Jutta Hebel
  • Publication Date: 12-2006
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: China's transition to a market economy has been a process of basic institutional changes and institution building. The institutional change from a socialist labour regime (SLR) as one of the backbones upholding the traditional leninist system to a new 'socialist' market labour regime (SMLR) became particularly important for the success of economic and political reforms. This analysis is based on the analytical framework of regimes and makes use of the idea of path dependence. An ensemble of institutions, mutually interconnected and influencing each other, forms the regime and shapes its trajectory. Six institutions are identified to constitute the employment regime: (1) the system of social control, (2) the production system, (3) the system of industrial relations, (4) the welfare system, (5) the family order, and (6) the educational system. The SMLR is still characterised by its socialist past and differs from other varieties of transformation labour regimes and bears little resemblance to labour regimes in Western market economies.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Markets
  • Political Geography: China, Asia