An Institutional Approach to Chinese NGOs: State Alliance versus State Avoidance Resource Strategies

  • Carolyn L. Hsu, Yuzhou Jiang
  • The China Quarterly, February 2015, Cambridge University Press
  • DOI: 10.1017/s0305741014001568

An Institutional Approach to Chinese NGOs

What is it about?

How can Chinese NGOs to flourish in a country where the government is unsupportive and even hostile to these kinds of organizations. This article uses techniques from organizational sociology to reveal two common and effective strategies. Some NGOs create partnerships with government officials, using those relationships to leverage policy changes and/or to access government resources for their own work. Other NGOs avoid state interference by existing primarily online.

Why is it important?

30 years ago, there were essentially no NGOs in China. Now there are hundreds of thousands of legally registered ones, plus millions more unregistered. How are these nongovernmental organizations changing the relationship between ordinary citizens and the state? Many Chinese NGOs act in ways that seem counterintuitive to Westerners, but that does not mean that they are not transforming Chinese society. This article explores their strategies and their influence.

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The following have contributed to this page: Carolyn L. Hsu