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Fairbank Center Director’s Seminar featuring Kerry Ratigan – Social Policy and Decentralization in China

March 9, 2021 @ 12:30 pm 1:30 pm

Speaker: Kerry Ratigan, Assistant Professor of Political Science, Amherst College

China is widely known for its strong central government, but the center needs the provinces to implement policies using their knowledge of local conditions. However, provincial priorities sometimes conflict with those of the center. Drawing on research conducted for her forthcoming book, Let Some Get Healthy First: How Local Politics Shaped Social Policy in China, Ratigan shows how local politics have impacted social policy implementation in China. While some provinces tend to closely follow central directives, others resist central policy, sometimes subverting the goals of the central government. Although decentralization in contemporary China peaked in the early 2000s, the impact of local government is still salient despite recent efforts to reign in local actors.

Dr. Kerry Ratigan is an assistant professor of Political Science at Amherst College where she currently teaches courses on Chinese politics and social movements. Her research has focused on Chinese politics, social policy, and state-society relations, including extensive work on health policy adoption and implementation in rural China. She received her PhD in Political Science from the University of Wisconsin–Madison, a Master’s Degree from the London School of Economics, and a BA in Political Science and Spanish from Haverford College.

Part of the Director’s Seminar Series

Presented via Zoom Webinar


March 9, 2021
12:30 pm – 1:30 pm
Event Category:


Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies

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