Politics of cadre system reforms in China 1978-2004

中國幹部制度改革的政治 1978-2004

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis

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  • Suizhou LI


Awarding Institution
Award date4 Oct 2004


As a Leninist socialist country under the leadership of the Communist Party, China is making a transition into a modem society. Since 1993, China had instituted a state civil service. In the context of a monopoly of cadre management by the Communist Party, what do the cadre system reform measures over the past two decades represent? What are the problems facing the party, and what are the solutions to these problems? This study shows that the Communist Party has introduced a hybrid bureaucracy - a combination of meritocracy and politocracy. The Communist Party has evolved a dichotomy-like position classification - a position classification of leadership cadres and ordinary cadres. It is a unique classification system that consists of two comparatively independent sets of cadre to be governed by a different cluster of regulations. The efforts and endeavors of the cadre system reforms under the leadership of the communist party, can be best summarized as "an institutionalization of personnel techniques". Generally speaking, it is a one-sided cadre system reform, which takes capacity-building as its core value. The reform attaches great importance to technical aspects that enhance professional competence of the cadre contingent, but does not touch on the fundamental political aspects of the polity. The party just seeks to recruit a large quantity of young and well-educated people in order to enhance political stability and to ensure economic growth. The problems, for example, corruption created by the existing political power structure cannot be resolved through technical improvement of the cadre system. This study shows that the party introduces market mechanisms in economy, but sticks to despotism in politics. This might be a bottleneck for further development of China's market economy, and undermine the modernization drive in China.

    Research areas

  • Civil service, China, Officials and employees, Party work, 中国共产党, Zhongguo gong chan dang