This much-needed new textbook introduces readers to the development of China's welfare polices since its conception of an open-door policy in 1978. Setting out basic concepts and issues, including key terms and the process of policy making, it overcomes a major barrier to understanding Chinese social policy.
The book explores in detail the five key policy areas of employment, social security, health, education and housing. Each is examined using a human well-being framework comprising both qualitative and quantitative data and eight dimensions: physical and psychological well-being, social integration, fulfilment of caring duties, human learning and development, self-determination, equal value and just polity. This enables the authors to provide not only factual information on policies but also an in-depth understanding of the impact of welfare changes on the quality of life of Chinese people over the past three decades.
A major strength of the book lies in its use of primary Chinese language sources, including relevant White Papers, central and local government policy documents, academic research studies and newspapers for each policy area. There are very few books in English on social policy in China, and this book will be welcomed both by academics and students of China and East Asian studies and comparative social policy and by those who want to know more about China's social development.
"...a ground-breaking book. It is not only important in terms of the amount of information provided but also in terms of how to examine the massive reform efforts in China......
It should be on the reading lists for all students and scholars interested in social policy and social development in China." Social Policy & Administration, Vol 42: 5, 2008
"As a textbook it provides an excellent tool for teachers of undergraduates and postgraduates who are new to either China or social welfare reform. For those who are already familiar with the topic, the text will be of more interest because of the human well-being framework used - especially the introduction of the 'just polity' requirement." China Quarterly, Vol 195, 2008
".....the book is a valuable addition to the English language literature on social policy in China. It provides a general over-view of five major social policy areas, with critical assessment delivered through a framework emphasizing human development and well-being." British Journal of Social Work.
"This book presents systematic illustration of changes to Chinese social policy as it adapts to the market economy, and how it confronts the new social problems that accompany rapid economic growth. It will be a useful introductory text for those studying Chinese social policy." Professor Shogo Takegawa, Department of Sociology, University of Tokyo, and Chair of the East Asian Social Policy Research Network
Chak Kwan Chan is Senior Lecturer in Social Policy at Nottingham Trent University, UK. King Lun Ngok is Associate Professor at the Centre for Public Administration Research, School of Government at Sun Yat-Sen University, The People's Republic of China. David Phillips is Reader in Social Policy at the University of Sheffield, UK.
Part one: Background and framework: China's social policy: background and issues; Social policy and well-being; Social policy in the context of economic reforms; The making of social policy in China; Part two: Key policy areas and well-being: Social security policy; Labour policy; Health policy; Education policy; Housing policy; Part three: Conclusion: Welfare reform and well-being.