It has become a truism that continued economic reform in China will contribute to political change. Policy makers as well as many scholars expect that formation of a private sector will lead, directly or indirectly through the emergence of a civil society, to political change and ultimately democratization. The rapidly growing numbers of private entrepreneurs, the formation of business associations, and the cooperative relationships between entrepreneurs and local officials are seen as initial indicators of a transition from China's still nominally communist political system. This book, first published in 2003, focuses on two related issues: whether the Chinese Communist Party is willing and able to adapt to the economic environment its reforms are bringing about, and whether China's 'red capitalists', private entrepreneurs who also belong to the communist party, are likely to be agents of political change.
• The first book to focus on the relationship between the Chinese Communist Party and the private sector • First study of its kind to rely on original survey data • Comparative in design
1. Introduction; 2. Challenges of party building in the reform era; 3. New institutional links; Appendix: survey design and implementation; 4. The politics of cooptation; 5. The political beliefs and behaviors of China's red capitalists; Appendix: multivariate analyses of political beliefs of officials and entrepreneurs; 6. Conclusion.