Spring Seminar Series: The Political Economy of Policy Experimentations in China with Prof. David Yang


Date and Time

May 11, 2021 11:00 AM - 12:15 PM


RSVP Required.


Zoom Meeting

Tuesday, May 11, 2021 | 11:00am-12:15 pm Pacific Time

The Political Economy of Policy Experimentations in China

Policy learning, often involving experimentations, is an essential component of government's decision making. In this project, we aim to describe and understand China's policy experimentations, which are speculated by many to have played a vital role in fostering China's reform and growth. We collect comprehensive data on policy experimentations conducted in China over the past 4 decades by 139 ministries and commissions. In sum, our results suggest that policy experimentations take place under various political and bureaucratic constraints, which could limit the scope and bias the direction of policy learning.

Watch the Recorded Event:

Headshot of Dr. David Yang
David Yang
About the Speaker

David Yang is an Assistant Professor of Economics at Harvard University, as well as a Faculty Research Fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) and Global Scholar at the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR). His research focuses on political economy, behavioral and experimental economics, economic history, and cultural economics. In particular, David studies the forces of stability and forces of changes in authoritarian regimes, drawing lessons from historical and contemporary China.

Seminar Series Moderators:

Headshot of Dr. Scott Rozelle

Scott Rozelle holds the Helen Farnsworth Endowed Professorship at Stanford University and is Senior Fellow in the Food Security and Environment Program and the Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center, Freeman Spogli Institute (FSI) for International Studies. For the past 30 years, he has worked on the economics of poverty reduction. Currently, his work on poverty has its full focus on human capital, including issues of rural health, nutrition and education. For the past 20 year, Rozelle has been the chair of the International Advisory Board of the Center for Chinese Agricultural Policy, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS). In recent years Rozelle spends most of his time co-directing the Rural Education Action Project (REAP). In recognition of this work, Dr. Rozelle has received numerous honors and awards. Among them, he became a Yangtse Scholar (Changjiang Xuezhe) in Renmin University of China in 2008. In 2008 he also was awarded the Friendship Award by Premiere Wen Jiabao, the highest honor that can be bestowed on a foreigner. 

hongbin li headshotHongbin Li is the James Liang Director of the China Program at the Stanford King Center on Global Development, and a Senior Fellow of Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research (SIEPR). Hongbin obtained his Ph.D. in economics from Stanford University in 2001 and joined the economics department of the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK), where he became full professor in 2007. He was also one of the two founding directors of the Institute of Economics and Finance at the CUHK. He taught at Tsinghua University in Beijing 2007-2016 and was C.V. Starr Chair Professor of Economics in the School of Economics and Management. He founded the Chinese College Student Survey (CCSS) in 2009 and the China Employer-Employee Survey (CEES) in 2014.

Hongbin’s research has been focused on the transition and development of the Chinese economy, and the evidence-based research results have been both widely covered by media outlets and well read by policy makers around the world. He is currently the co-editor of the Journal of Comparative Economics.

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