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The Power Structure and Its Political Consequences


Chapter one develops a dynamic model to investigate the paradox of the Chinese state-society relations before and after the reform. By assuming that citizens and the government are both forward looking and protestors in the CCP regime have to pay the durable cost, the model generates several findings. First, the model identifies an increasing number of protests in a transition economy because the decentralized reform has induced such significant changes as the weakened central authority, released social control and increased distributable income. Second, a low level of social unrests is found in both stationary and non-stationary equilibrium in a central planning economy. Third, the model demonstrates the strong capability of a command economy in administrating economic crisis. Finally, the future tendency of the Chinese state-society relations depends on the re-strengthening of central authority and the techniques that the center will apply to respond the mass incidents.

Chapter two develops the Crowford and Sobel's cheap talk model (1982) and Hoff and Stiglitz's model of anarchy of demand for the rule of law (2004), and investigates the significance of peasants' rebellions on Chinese dynastic stability and the large variance in the duration of reign within the dynastic cycle. I contend that dynastic stability is determined by the initial land distribution and the center-local relationship in the Central Autocratic System. As the center cannot constrain the local corruption, the portion of peasant proprietors and thus dynastic stability has a tendency of decreasing over time. In addition, the patterns of dynastic longevity are shaped by the type of preceding wars before the dynasty was built.

Very few researches focus on the role of judicial system in determining the level of corruption. Employing a formal model with empirical analyses, Chapter three incorporate economic factors with political constraints to investigate the different roles of democracy and judicial independence in determining the level of bureaucrats' corruption across countries. Empirically, the instrumental variable (IV) approach is applied to resolve the endogeneity problems. The evidence indicates that different levels of corruption across countries are significantly influenced by the degrees of judicial independence. To fight corruption successfully, I contend that the judiciary, as a hard institutional constraint to resist bureaucratic corruption, has to be independent from the government.

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