Local Environmental Politics in China: Challenges and Innovations

1st Edition

Genia Kostka, Arthur P.J. Mol

Routledge
Published July 23, 2015
Reference - 134 Pages
ISBN 9781138950665 - CAT# Y206097

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Summary

Knowledge and insight in national environmental governance in China is widespread. However, increasingly it has been acknowledged that the major problems in guiding the Chinese economy and society towards sustainability are to be found at the local level. This book illuminates the fast-changing dynamics of local environmental politics in China, a topic only marginally addressed in the literature. In the course of building up an institutional framework for environmental governance over the last decade, local actors have generated a variety of policy innovations and experiments. In large measure these are creative responses to two main challenges associated with translating national environmental policies into local realities. The first such challenge is a ‘policy implementation gap’ stemming from the absence of the state capacity necessary to the implementation of environmental measures. The second challenge refers to the need for local non-state actors to engage in environmental management; oftentimes such a ‘participation gap’ contributes to implementation failures. In recent years, we have seen a multitude of initiatives within China at the provincial level and below designed to bridge both ‘gaps’. Hence, the central aim of this book is to assess these experiments and innovations in local environmental politics.

This book was originally published as a special issue of the Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning.

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