Bureaucracy, politics, and decision making in post-Mao China by Kenneth G. Lieberthal, David M. Lampton

By Kenneth G. Lieberthal, David M. Lampton

Utilizing a version of "fragmented authoritarianism," this quantity sharpens our view of the internal workings of the chinese language paperwork. The participants' interviews with politically well-placed bureaucrats and students, besides documentary and box study, remove darkness from the bargaining and maneuvering between officers at the nationwide, provincial, and native degrees.

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LIEBERTHAL DAVID M. LAMPTON Page 1 One Introduction: The "Fragmented Authoritarianism" Model and Its Limitations Kenneth G. Lieberthal The reforms that began at the end of the 1970s created opportunities for unprecedented scholarly access to government agencies in the People's Republic of China (PRC), thus vastly increasing our potential for understanding bureaucratic relationships and policy processes there. 2 It became increasingly possible to probe perceptions, to trace in detail specific policy decisions, to become familiar with the recommendations made by various staff organs, to match formal bureaucratic relationships against actual behavior of officials, and so forth.

15 The chapters in this volume add new richness to our understanding of "fragmented authoritarianism," provide an understanding of the limitations to which this model is subject, and explain the reasons for those limitations. They also provide a basis for anticipating the systemic consequences of various changes in China's political priorities and the degree of malleability in the Chinese bureaucratic system. But first, the essentials of the "fragmented authoritarianism" model can be described as follows.

In essence, the institutes competed with line bureaucratic units (and with each other) to persuade Zhao Ziyang and other top officials of the wisdom of the institutes' policy proposals. Their effectiveness depended in part on the personal ties between the institute leaders and the top political leaders, as is shown by the changes (generally, for the worse) in the stature and effectiveness of various institutes since Zhao Ziyang's ouster in mid-1989. But the fact that the institutes demonstrably had the ear of powerful officials also made line bureaucratic units take the institutes seriously and try to adjust their own policy advocacy to a system in which these institutes provided the top leaders with serious information and analytical work.

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