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TitleDécentralisation et environnement en Chine
AuthorXiong, Hang
UniversityUniversité d'Auvergne - Clermont-Ferrand I
Thesis typePh.D
Number of pages206
AbstractIn the literature, debate around environmental federalism is lasting and inconclusive. China has followed the global tendency of decentralization and has adopted a de facto environmental federalism. In this broad and diverse country, local knowledge and expertise is necessary to develop proper solutions for many environmental problems with local and regional nature. However, despite the adopted de facto environmental federalism, dramatic environmental crises and policy failures widespread in China. In particular, more recently, this country has seen arise many problems predicted by the opponents of decentralization. It appears that, contrary to the fiscal decentralization which has been a "helping hand" in resource mobilization and economic growth at the sub-national level, the decentralization of environmental policy implementation has rather been a "grabbing hand" in environmental management. With the purpose of providing a better and detailed understanding of the de facto environmental federalism in China, this thesis follows the different critics in the literature and test empirically for each of them in the Chinese-specific context. In summary, empirical results found in this thesis support the existence of problems related to environmental externality, strategic interaction and politically incentivized environment-sacrificing behaviors. Moreover, the current fiscal decentralization is likely to strengthen the capital-competition driven inter-provincial interaction; fiscal imbalance is more environmentally detrimental in poor provinces. These findings call for a "new environmental federalism" and a reform of incentives, in order to transform the Chinese de facto environmental federalism from a "grabbing hand" to a "helping hand" for better environmental governance.
Keywords (en)China;economy;environment;government;decentralization;power
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