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In any time and space and under any circumstance, we find peasants are never passive actors in their livelihoods and rural development. Instead, they always create space…
In any time and space and under any circumstance, we find peasants are never passive actors in their livelihoods and rural development. Instead, they always create space for manoeuvre in order to make changes. This chapter analyses the innovative actions taken by the majority of rural inhabitants in rural areas during the overwhelming modernization process, so as to affirm that peasants are the main actors of rural development. It is they who have shaped the transformation of rural societies and the history. Through the analysis, this chapter concludes that rural development is not an objective, a blueprint nor a design. It is not the to-be-developed rear field in modernization. It is not the babysitter for cities, nor a rehearsal place for bureaucrats to testify their random thoughts. Rural development is what peasants do. The path they have chosen reveals scenery so different from modernization. If we regard development as a social change, or a cross with influential meanings, we could understand rural development as peasants’ victories over their predicament. Villages accommodate not only peasants, but without peasants villages would surely vanish. In this sense, the most important part in rural development or rural change is peasants – their conditions and their feelings.
The purpose of this paper is to provide an updated picture of the emergence of specific firms, cities and sectors of excellence in one of the best performing industrial…
The purpose of this paper is to provide an updated picture of the emergence of specific firms, cities and sectors of excellence in one of the best performing industrial areas of China: Guangdong Province.
The paper focuses on a single province‐case study and zooms on its leading territories, sectors, firms and policies. Geographical areas, industrial sectors and firms are defined “of excellence” according to their contribution to the overall industrial performance of the province.
High industrial performances are not equally spread in the province. They involve specific sectors (such as electronics), areas (Pearl River Delta) and even specific firms (particularly Chinese‐owned and SOEs). This picture is in line with the recent policy objectives (support to ODI by national companies, indigenous innovation, national and local champions, restructuring of SOEs) and with the history of preferential industrial development policies.
Given the concentration of industrial excellence in the province, there is a need to further investigate the leading actors. Given the persistent policy practice to encourage excellences (areas, sectors and firms), there is a need to further investigate the linkages between provincial/local policies and performances. The empirical test on the existence of a causal link between policies and performances of specific territories and sectors is left for further research.
While much of the existing literature concentrates on the impressive industrial growth of China as a whole, the paper stresses the degree of concentration of such growth and the importance of focusing on specific leading actors in order to fully understand the industrial development of the country.