Friday, January 2, 2009

Does the world really need another blog?

And do I really have time to write one?

Put simply, for at least the next couple of years I'll be working on a dissertation, and my ability to write anything worthy of note in this space may be somewhat limited. However, that's no reason I cannot at least begin a dialogue among myself and the
handful other of people out there who may be interested in the topic of business-government relations in China.

The impetus behind this blog has been my occasional "discovery" of interesting news stories in both the Chinese and English language media that have escaped much notice in the mainstream business press. While I don't expect to set the world on fire here, it is my hope that, by highlighting some of these stories -- or combinations of stories -- I, with the help of anyone who cares to comment, can begin to craft a story that explains the evolving nature of business-government relations in China.

Just a bit about my research...

Without going into too much detail, I will be focusing on China's auto industry -- both state-owned and private enterprises -- in an effort to understand the nature of business-government relations in China. The purpose for focusing on a single industry (aside from the fact that I'm a one-man show, and I don't want to be writing this dissertation for the rest of my life) is so that I can control for industrial policy.

Again, without going into too much detail, my hope is that, once all is said and done, I can make some general statements about how different levels of China's Party/State interact with businesses in their respective jurisdictions.

Who cares?

Well, I think we all should, but I don't see that happening. So, at a minimum, I hope that the upshot of all this work is a better understanding of how an up-and-coming world power manages its move toward the top of the economic heap, and to what degree heavy state involvement either helps or hurts those efforts.

As the U.S. government continues to deepen its own involvement in private industry (without a clear "exit strategy", I might add) an understanding of how Chinese businesses cope with the heavy hand of government may begin to prove useful.

Welcome to the ChinaBizGov blog! Thanks for reading.

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