Allies of the State: Democratic Support and Regime Support among China's Private Entrepreneurs

China Quarterly, Vol. 196, 2008

25 Pages Posted: 23 Nov 2008

See all articles by Jie Chen

Jie Chen

Old Dominion University

Bruce Dickson

George Washington University

Date Written: December 1, 2008

Abstract

This article examines the intensity and sources of Chinese private entrepreneurs' support for the current political system and consequently their orientation toward democracy. The study presented here is based on data from a representative sample of private entrepreneurs collected from five coastal provinces in late 2006 and early 2007. The major findings indicate that in general China's private entrepreneurs tend to support the current Party-state and, subsequently, to be in favor of the status quo. In addition, among all the factors analyzed in this study, the subjective values - such as democratic values, life satisfaction, evaluation of government policy performance, and perception of official corruption - apparently play the most decisive role in shaping private entrepreneurs' support for the Chinese-Communist-Party regime. These findings have important implications for the survival of the regime and for the role of private entrepreneurs in a potential political change toward democracy.

Keywords: Chinese Politics, Democracy, Private Entrepreneurs

Suggested Citation

Chen, Jie and Dickson, Bruce, Allies of the State: Democratic Support and Regime Support among China's Private Entrepreneurs (December 1, 2008). China Quarterly, Vol. 196, 2008. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1305611

Jie Chen (Contact Author)

Old Dominion University ( email )

Department of Political Science
Norfolk, VA 23529-0222
United States
757-683-3947 (Phone)

Bruce Dickson

George Washington University ( email )

2121 I Street NW
Washington, DC 20052
United States

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