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Title: The tranformation of the Shanghai water sector in the reform era : social actors and institutional change
Author: Lee, Seung Ho.
Awarding Body: School of Oriental and African Studies (University of London)
Current Institution: SOAS, University of London
Date of Award: 2004
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This study aims to evaluate the extent to which Shanghai has coped with freshwater demand with a focus on water pollution control over the past decade in the reform era since 1990. Water scarcity caused by pollution associated with the rapidly developing economy since the 1990s has pushed the Shanghai govel11ment, the maj or actor in water policy, to implement a number of water engineering projects as well as to adopt a number of institutional reforms. Water policy-making in the Shanghai water sector since the late 1990s has been complicated by the interaction of the Shanghai govel11ment with other newly emergent social actors, such as private enterprises, environmental NGOs, and the activities of Shanghai citizens. This complexity has been compounded by the presence of intel11ational development agencies. A range of social theory has been used to analyse developments in Shanghai's water policy, such as the grid/group theory of Mary Douglas, the political ecology theory of I-Iajer, and the coevolutionary approach of complex adaptive theory. Data and information derived from interviews with different actors in Shanghai water affairs are used to show that there has been a growing influence of environmental NGOs coupled with an incremental increase in public awareness of the need for environmental protection. There has also been a rapid development of private sector participation in the Shanghai water sector, primarily led by water trans-national corporations. In addition, the Shanghai govel11l11ent has started to transform itself from a sole service provider into a regulatory entity overseeing the institutional evolution ofthe water sector. The thesis concludes that the polarised state-society duality in Shanghai water policy has been transformed through the contributions of new social actors. Levels of cooperation achieved have facilitated the early stages of a regulatory regime to guarantee the provision of high-quality water for Shanghai.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available