Accountability Without Democracy: Solidary Groups And Public Goods Provision In Rural China
Accountability Without Democracy: Solidary Groups and Public Goods Provision in Rural China
This book examines the fundamental issue of how citizens get government officials to provide them with the roads, schools, and other public services they need by studying communities in rural China. In authoritarian and transitional systems, formal institutions for holding government officials accountable are often weak. The answer, Lily L. Tsai found, lies in a community's social institutions. Even when formal democratic and bureaucratic institutions of accountability are weak, government officials can still be subject to informal rules and norms created by community solidary groups that have earned high moral standing in the community.
"Lily Tsai has written an outstanding book in which she raises important questions and pursues them with great skill. The use of data is both clever and appropriate; she seldom claims more than she can support, and the claims she makes are driven home with careful ferocity. Tsai also unravels theoretical concepts at a very high level of sophistication, which enables her to situate her China specific findings in a broader comparative context, where democracy is not fully institutionalized."
Atul Kohli, Princeton University
"In this book, Lily Tsai expertly...