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Policy Options on Fostering Self-Governance Capability of Grassroots Communities: A Field Survey in Pizhou City, Jiangsu Province(No.148, 2017)


By Yang Weifu & Shen He, Research Team on “Innovative Development of Social Governance in China”, Public Administration and Human Resources, DRC

Research report No.148, 2017 (Total 5223) 2017-11-10

Abstract: Fostering self-governance capability of urban and rural areas in line with the principle of co-construction with shared management and common interests is significant, but is a hard issue to be addressed in terms of achieving the overarching goals of social governance. Currently, social contradictions at grassroots levels are looming up, the community level self-governance lack internal driving force and the rule of law and discipline rite are inadequate. The main reasons are as follows. First, the self-governance organizations still follow administrative regulations. As a result, grassroots communities have not played the role as self-governance entities. Second, due to obscured division of power, self-governance organizations and grassroots Party organizations often contradict each other in their work, leading to the weakening of self-governance capability. Third, after the reform of taxes and fees, the grassroots-level governments and self-governance organizations lack driving forces. Fourth, binding regulations and emergency management mechanism are not in step with self-governance at source. Fifth, the slow reconstruction of the rule of law and discipline rite has resulted in weak capacity in self-regulation in grassroots communities. Although many local governments have made explorations on self-governance projects, most of them are facing the problem of sustainable development. However, Pizhou city in Jiangsu province has made prominent achievements on fostering the self-governance capability of grassroots communities through governing public space in urban and rural areas. This paper suggests that the boundary between local governments and grassroots self-governance organizations should be well defined, the financing channels of grassroots communities should be expanded, the rule of law and discipline rite should be fleshed out and top-level designs relating to self-governance should be enforced.

Key words: self-governance capability of grassroots communities, boundary of self-governance, self-dependence capability, Pizhou city