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Chinese township village enterprises as vaguely defined cooperations

Weitzman, M and Xu, Cheng-Gang (1993) Chinese township village enterprises as vaguely defined cooperations. CEP discussion paper, 155. Centre for Economic Performance, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK.

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This paper concerns the paradoxes and dilemmas that the very successful "Chinese model" presents for transition theory. The "Chinese model" is centered on the development of township-village enterprises. The main purpose of this paper is to make the case that TVE's are not just some form of disguised capitalist institution; they are much better described as "vaguely defined cooperatives" - meaning an essentially communal organization extremely far removed from having a well defined ownership structure. That a transition strategy based on vaguely defined cooperatives should be so successful presents a severe challenge for traditional property rights theory. We speculate that to address this challenge properly, traditional property rights theory should be extended by including a dimension corresponding to the degree of individualism/cooperation existing in a society. A model of the required extension is described. Implications and applications are discussed.

Item Type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 1993 The Authors
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Sets: Collections > Economists Online
Departments > Economics
Identification Number: 155
Date Deposited: 10 Mar 2008 11:37

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