From Power Balancing to a Dominant Faction in Xi Jinping’s China

Eun Choi, John Wagner Givens, Andrew W. MacDonald “From Power Balancing to a Dominant Faction in Xi Jinping’s China” China Quarterly, Forthcoming

36 Pages Posted: 17 Mar 2021

See all articles by Eun Kyong Choi

Eun Kyong Choi

Hankuk University of Foreign Studies

John Wagner Givens

Kennesaw State University

Andrew W. MacDonald

Duke Kunshan University

Date Written: January 29, 2021

Abstract

Many China-watchers argue that Xi Jinping 习近平 has concentrated power in his own hands in a manner unprecedented since the death of Mao Zedong 毛泽东 and Deng Xiaoping 邓小平. This article tests the extent of Xi’s power consolidation by comparing the strength of his faction during his time in power to similar periods under his two immediate predecessors, Jiang Zemin 江泽民 and Hu Jintao 胡锦涛. Furthermore, we investigate whether a dominant faction is emerging under Xi Jinping, replacing the power balancing between factions that was the norm throughout the reform era. Analyzing factional affiliations of Chinese leaders in the top four ranks, we find that Xi has formed a dominant faction. Through statistical analysis of promotion chances of provincial leaders, we find that Xi has been unusually successful in promoting his clients as compared to previous leaders. This suggests that Xi has strengthened his faction by promoting provincial leaders to an extent unprecedented since the death of Mao and Deng.

Keywords: Elite Politics, Factions, Hu Jintao, Xi Jinping, China

Suggested Citation

Choi, Eun Kyong and Givens, John Wagner and MacDonald, Andrew W., From Power Balancing to a Dominant Faction in Xi Jinping’s China (January 29, 2021). Eun Choi, John Wagner Givens, Andrew W. MacDonald “From Power Balancing to a Dominant Faction in Xi Jinping’s China” China Quarterly, Forthcoming, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3775877

Eun Kyong Choi (Contact Author)

Hankuk University of Foreign Studies ( email )

270 Imun-dong Dongdaemun-gu
Seoul, 130-791
Korea, Republic of (South Korea)

John Wagner Givens

Kennesaw State University ( email )

MD 2205 - PSIA - Social Sciences, 402 Bartow Ave.
230 S. Bouquet Street
Kennesaw, GA 30144
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://works.bepress.com/john-givens/

Andrew W. MacDonald

Duke Kunshan University ( email )

No. 8 Duke Avenue
Kunshan, Jiangsu 215316
China

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
96
Abstract Views
427
rank
387,396
PlumX Metrics