Book Launch: Challenges in the Process of China’s Urbanization



Jean C. Oi, Stanford University
Karen Eggleston, Stanford University
Klaus Desmet , Southern Methodist University

Date and Time

May 25, 2017 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM



Open to the public.

RSVP required by 5PM May 24.


Philippines Conference Room
Encina Hall, 3rd Floor
616 Serra Street, Stanford, CA 94305

The same institutions that enabled China’s massive urbanization and spurred its economic growth now require further reform and innovation.

To address the issues facing the next phase of the nation’s transformation, the National New Urbanization Plan (2014–20) set ambitious targets for sustainable, human-centered, and environmentally friendly urbanization. This volume explores the key institutional and governance challenges China will face in reaching those goals. Its policy-focused contributions from leading social scientists in the United States and China explore aspects of urbanization ranging from migration and labor markets to agglomeration economies, land finance, affordable housing, and education policy. Subjects covered in the eleven chapters include:


    * Institutional problems leading to fiscal pressures on local governments and unequal provision of social    services to migrant families   

   * The history of land financing and threats to its sustainability

    * The difficulty of sorting out property rights in rural China

    * How administrative redistricting has allowed the urbanization of geographical administrative places to     outpace the urbanization of populations within those areas

    * How the hukou system may not be the sole, or even primary, mechanism restricting migrants from      public goods, such as their childrens’ education

    * Whether the nation’s food security is threatened by its ongoing urbanization

    * The current state of the provision of low-income housing, and future challenges

Professor Jean Oi is Director of the China Program, William Haas Professor of Chinese Politics, Stanford University; Lee Shau Kee Director of the Stanford Center, Peking University. Her work focuses on comparative politics, with special expertise on political economy and the process of reform in transitional systems.  Oi has written extensively on China's rural politics and political economy. Her State and Peasant in Contemporary China (University of California Press, 1989) examined the core of rural politics in the Mao period—the struggle over the distribution of the grain harvest—and the clientelistic politics that ensued. Her Rural China Takes Off (University of California Press, 1999) examined the property rights necessary for development and showed how "local state corporatism" facilitated rapid growth of rural industry.  Recent publications include Growing Pains: Tensions and Opportunity in China's Transformation (Brookings Institution Press, 2010), co-edited with Scott Rozelle and Xueguang Zhou; and “Development Strategies and Poverty Reduction in China,” in Yusuf Bangura, ed., The Developmental Road to Poverty Reduction, (2015); and “Rural Development,” in David S. Goodman, ed., Handbook of the Politics of China (Edward Elgar Publishing, 2015).

Professor Karen Eggleston is Director of the Asia Health Policy Program; Deputy Director, Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center. She joined the Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center (APARC) in the summer of 2007. She is also a fellow at Stanford's Center for Health Policy/Primary Care and Outcomes Research (CHP/PCOR), and a Faculty Research Fellow of the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER). Her research focuses on comparative healthcare systems and health reform in Asia, especially China; government and market roles in the health sector; payment incentives; healthcare productivity; and the economics of the demographic transition. Eggleston teaches through Stanford's East Asian studies program and is also affiliated with Stanford's public policy program.

Professor Klaus Desmet is Altshuler Centennial Interdisciplinary Professor at Southern Methodist University; Research Fellow at the Centre for Economic Policy Research. He holds an MSc in Business and Engineering from the Université Catholique de Louvain and a Ph.D. in Economics from Stanford University. He previously was professor at Universidad Carlos III de Madrid and has held visiting positions at a number of institutions, including the University of Illinois, Stanford University and the Bank of Spain. His research focuses on regional economics, international trade, economic growth and diversity.

Books will be available for sale. Cash or check only.