From outsiders to insiders: the rise of China ENGOs as new experts in the law-making process and the building of a technocratic representation

Froissart, Chloé. « From outsiders to insiders: the rise of China ENGOs as new experts in the law-making process and the building of a technocratic representation ». Journal of Chinese Governance, vol. 4, n° 3 (September 2019), pp. 207-232. Publié en ligne le 17 juillet 2019. URL : https://doi.org/10.1080/23812346.2019.1638686 (consulté le 6 septembre 2019)

Studying the pluralization of the law-making process in China, this article explains how environmental NGOs shifted from an outsider to an insider status following the amendment of the Environmental Protection Law. Whereas law-making in China has often been described as a search for compromise, this case-study rather highlights the link between the entry of new actors into the legislative process and their role in rebalancing power relations among administrative agencies with conflicting views and interests, thereby directly impacting the reframing of the law. This case-study thus highlights consultative authoritarianism’s permeability with power politics and social mobilization. Differentiating the ‘entry moment’ from the process whereby ENGOs durably become insiders, this article also investigates the conditions for sustainable inclusion and the way the inclusion process broadens. Pointing out that authoritarian participation differentiates from democratic participation because ENGOs are primarily included as experts, this article complements the consultative authoritarianism framework by arguing that expertise allows for a technocratic form of representation of the broader public deprived of the right to political participation, hence enabling the law to better reflect the general interest.

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Monique Abud

Centre d'études sur la Chine moderne et contemporaine, EHESS, Paris, France

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Monique Abud

Centre d'études sur la Chine moderne et contemporaine, EHESS, Paris, France

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