Who Runs China? A Story Told by Machine Learning

60 Pages Posted: 11 Nov 2019

See all articles by Xian Gu

Xian Gu

Central University of Finance and Economics (CUFE); University of Pennsylvania

Iftekhar Hasan

Fordham University - Gabelli School of Business; Bank of Finland

Linda Zhao

University of Pennsylvania - Statistics Department

Yun Zhu

St. John's University - Department of Economics and Finance

Date Written: September 4, 2019

Abstract

China’s politician selection process has been obscure and rarely discussed. This paper uses machine learning approaches to bring economic performance, political patronage and career path into one picture in understanding the provincial level politicians’ selection decision of China. Through mapping out the dynamic politician networks from 1995 to 2015, we find network communities are strongly determined by hometown ties. The predictions using machine learning algorithms including shrinkage and tree-based methods affirm the importance of economic performance, expand the conventional understanding of political patronage with the concept and measurements of social network, and point out the critical impact of career path, with largely reduced testing errors.

Keywords: Politician, Network, Community, Centrality, Machine Learning

Suggested Citation

Gu, Xian and Hasan, Iftekhar and Zhao, Linda and Zhu, Yun, Who Runs China? A Story Told by Machine Learning (September 4, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3478639 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3478639

Xian Gu

Central University of Finance and Economics (CUFE) ( email )

39 South College Road
Haidian District
Beijing, Beijing 100081
China

University of Pennsylvania ( email )

3730 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States
19104 (Fax)

Iftekhar Hasan

Fordham University - Gabelli School of Business ( email )

Rose Hill Campus Bronx
New York, NY 10458
United States

Bank of Finland ( email )

P.O. Box 160
Helsinki 00101
Finland

Linda Zhao

University of Pennsylvania - Statistics Department ( email )

Wharton School
Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States

Yun Zhu (Contact Author)

St. John's University - Department of Economics and Finance ( email )

Jamaica, NY 11439
United States

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