Gendered clientelism and corruption : are women less corrupt than men in China?

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Journal / PublicationInternational Feminist Journal of Politics
Publication statusOnline published - 22 Jun 2021


Among civil servants, are women less corrupt than men? The established literature suggests that there is no gender gap in officials’ attitudes toward corruption when they are exposed to ample opportunities and networks for corruption. Drawing on an original survey of Chinese civil servants, this study explores the gender gap in tolerance for corruption and the mediating effect of clientelism on the gender–corruption link. The findings indicate that women’s tolerance for corruption is significantly lower than that of men in China, a country consistently plagued by corruption. The study reveals that clientelism is a crucial explanatory variable in the relationship between gender and tolerance for corruption. Women are more likely to be excluded from clientelist networks that facilitate corruption, meaning that they are less likely to be exposed to a culture of corruption or to take advantage of corruption. Women’s lower acceptance of clientelism partly contributes to their stronger inclination to reject corruption.

Research Area(s)

  • China, gender, corruption tolerance for corruption, clientelist networks, public officials, 中國, 性別, 公職人員, 腐敗容忍度, 庇護網路