Sustainable Development in China: How to Realize a Breakthrough

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Shunjiang, Huang

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Graduate School of Public Administration, Seoul National University
Korean Journal of Policy Studies, Vol.17 No.1, pp. 97-123
Although China enjoys a good tradition of sustainability, and has made great stride at addressing pressing environmental problems, it still lacks a substantial environmental base for sustainable development. The national ecological condition seriously deteriorated in the 1990s. This paper examines major ecological challenges and explores a new path towards sustainable development. THe paper points out that the weakness of sustainability in CHina is primarily determined by the fragility of the national ecological geography and the huge population. However, the present underdeveloped market is a key driving force for ecological problems, because it maintains a powerful mechanism that delivers a higher pressure on the land. The prospect of CHina's sustainable development depends on the transformation of the market mechanism. However, realizing sustainable development necessitates taking a Chinese approach, which is aimed at a modest development oriented towards a comfortable lifestyle and based on a harmony of the society with nature. Sustainable development is in the mainstream of today's ideology. As one of the largest developing countries in the world, CHina has paid a great attention to ti. It is still one of the top pressing issues, and it is an arduous task for China to approach sustainable development in the new century. As a contribution to the UN Summit of Rio+10, this paper examines the progress and problems on the subject of sustainable development in China. The original concept and primary principles of sustainable development is introduced in Section 2. However, China should have its own deeper understanding of sustainable development because of its long history and cultural tradition in sustainability. This history is narrated in Section 1. Major actions taken in the past decade and their achievements are summarized in SEction 3. Today's national pressing ecological problems are introduced in Section 4, and explained in Section 5. A chinese path towards sustainable development is explored in Section 6. The last section gives a general conclusion for the paper.
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Graduate School of Public Administration (행정대학원)Dept. of Public Administration (행정학과)Korean Journal of Policy Studies (정책논총, KJPS)Korean Journal of Policy Studies (정책논총) vol.17(1) (2003)
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