NGO Strategies in an Authoritarian Context, and their Implications for Citizenship: The Case of the People's Republic of China

Voluntas: International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations 28(3): 1157-1179, 2017

23 Pages Posted: 8 Sep 2015 Last revised: 2 Jun 2017

See all articles by Jennifer Y.J. Hsu

Jennifer Y.J. Hsu

University of Alberta - Department of Political Science

Carolyn Hsu

Colgate University

Reza Hasmath

University of Alberta - Department of Political Science

Date Written: 2017

Abstract

This study argues that different cities in China have different resource environments available for NGOs. Organizations react to these resource environments by constructing appropriate resource strategies, which in turn shape the characteristics and structures of the NGOs of that city. It further examines how these characteristics and structures influence the construction and performance of citizenship in an authoritarian environment. Specifically, some types of NGOs encourage Chinese citizens to be passive, while others offer a model for people to actively engage with social issues. This is aptly demonstrated in an analysis of NGOs operating across four cities – Beijing, Shanghai, Kunming, and Nanjing – which reveals three different types of resource environments and behavioural models for NGOs. We subsequently discuss the implications of each model for citizen engagement.

Keywords: NGO, volunteers, citizenship, authoritarian, China

Suggested Citation

Hsu, Jennifer Y.J. and Hsu, Carolyn and Hasmath, Reza, NGO Strategies in an Authoritarian Context, and their Implications for Citizenship: The Case of the People's Republic of China (2017). Voluntas: International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations 28(3): 1157-1179, 2017. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2657187 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2657187

Jennifer Y.J. Hsu

University of Alberta - Department of Political Science ( email )

Department of Political Science
10-16 HM Tory Building
Edmonton, Alberta T6G2H4
Canada

Carolyn Hsu

Colgate University ( email )

13 Oak Drive
Hamilton NY 13346, NY 13346
United States

Reza Hasmath (Contact Author)

University of Alberta - Department of Political Science ( email )

10-16 Henry Marshall Tory Building
Edmonton, Alberta T6G 2H4
Canada

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