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Governing China’s coal challenge: changing public policy, debate and advocacy

journal contribution
posted on 04.07.2018, 00:00 authored by E Jeffreys, Jian XuJian Xu
This paper examines the nexus of coal–government–society relations in present-day China using a governmentality approach to explore the interactions between policy change, “crisis” management and social action. It outlines the noticeable shift in government rationalities and communication regarding the coal industry in recent years. It then frames this shift within the broader context of government–society relations focusing on public debate regarding the calamitous nature of China’s air pollution and its filtering via the censorship apparatus of the Communist Party-state. Finally, it shows how problems relating to coal extraction and combustion have been taken up at the level of grass-roots protest and philanthropic advocacy. An examination of such activism illustrates the crucial role played by digital media networks in sparking debate on coal-related environmental and health crises, and in pushing an authoritarian government to change national coal and other policies in order to maintain social and political stability.

History

Journal

Environmental communication

Volume

12

Issue

5

Pagination

575 - 588

Publisher

Taylor & Francis

Location

London, Eng.

ISSN

1752-4032

eISSN

1752-4040

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2018, Informa