PBLJ is the second oldest law journal at UCLA and focuses on a diverse range of legal and policy issues in the Pacific Rim, looking to both the Asia-Pacific and the Americas. In the past, PBLJ has featured articles on topics as varied as intellectual property regimes, climate change and migration in the Pacific, corporate governance, and affordable housing policy in China.
Volume 31, Issue 2, 2014
Mediation is a participatory intervention process wherein disputing parties work with a third party, the mediator, to negotiate a resolution of their conflict [to be continued...]
Corruption or Guanxi? Differentiating Between the Legitimate, Unethical, and Corrupt Activities of Chinese Government Officials
China has a well-documented corruption problem that has continued for decades, evolving concurrently with China’s economy and various institutional structures. In analyzing China’s corruption problem, the current definitions of corruption are inadequate to account for China’s guanxi culture, which requires gift giving in order to facilitate relationship building. By some definitions, the behaviors that guanxi culture mandates for Chinese society are corrupt when government officials engage in them, perhaps even implying that Chinese culture itself is corrupt. This is a mistake because it distracts from the actual causes of corruption. China’s corruption problem is caused by institutional and structural flaws that provide opportunities and incentives for corruption that would be exploited regardless of guanxi culture. Thus, it is important to explicitly exclude legitimate guanxi practices from the definition of corruption in order to bring into better focus the institutional, structural and procedural flaws that cause corruption and to provide workable solutions.
This article covers the often-overlooked framework for developingtrade policy in the United States. With two major international trade agreements currently in the midst of negotiations, the stakes are high for industry groups and other-than-industry actors looking to have their interests manifested in the final texts of these plurilateral pacts. Historically, the voices of other-than-industry actors have been restrained by their underrepresentation among the highly-influential Industry Trade Advisory Committees (ITACs), the most powerful cohort of committees in the trade policy framework. While the Obama Administration has sought to increase the potency of other-than-industry actors by creating additional opportunities for participation elsewhere in the trade policy framework, it is unclear that this solution provides the most effective remedy for groups seeking to exert greater influence in the trade policy arena.