Division of Public Policy

Dr. Xiaofan Zhao is awarded the Young Scientist Fund by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC)

DETAILS

Dr. Xiaofan Zhao is awarded the Young Scientist Fund by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC). NSFC awards are among the most prestigious research awards in China, and the Young Scientist Fund is awarded to junior researchers under 35(male)/40 (female). Last year, the overall success rate for this award was 16.2%. Among its eight panels of the award, management science is the only social science-related panel (and the one to which Dr. Zhao applied). The success rate in the management science panel was the second-lowest of all eight panels last year, at 14.9%. Dr. Zhao's study aims to investigate why businesses comply with energy-saving and emissions reduction regulations in China and the mechanisms through which these factors influence their compliance decision-making.

 

Abstract of the project:

This study aims to investigate why businesses comply with energy-saving and emissions reduction regulations in China and the mechanisms through which these factors influence their compliance decision-making. By uncovering the compliance motivations of businesses, this study also sheds light on government-business-relations in contemporary China. This study extends the empirical context of compliance research from the legal domain to the domain of administrative regulative documents and administrative orders. The principal investigator’s PhD dissertation shows that due to the inherent uncertainties of government requirements and the uncertainty in the use of enforcement tools, businesses perceive a pervasive threat from the government, which serves as a major driver for their compliance with energy conservation and emissions reduction regulation. This study aims to extend and enrich the so-called “pervasive threat” model of compliance developed in the dissertation: given the socioeconomic developments in the Chinese societies in recent years, does the pervasive threat model still hold true? In what context does pervasive threat work as a compliance motivation? In other words, does pervasive threat interact with other factors in driving compliance? This study will collect data on firm-level compliance motivation by field interviews with energy managers from approximately 60 industrial enterprises in Shandong Province, Jiangsu Province, and the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region. Interview data will be analyzed through a combination of qualitative methods including the grounded theory, fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA), and case studies. Through investigating the impact of pervasive threat on firm compliance, this study not only contributes to the conventional theories of regulatory compliance, but also provides a new lens through which to observe and assess progress in the rule of law and government-business relations in contemporary China.

 

香港科技大學公共政策學部趙小凡博士有幸獲得2021年國家自然科學基金青年科學基金項目資助。國家自然科學基金是中國最高等級的基金之一,其中青年基金項目授予35歲(男性)或40歲(女性)以下的科研人員。2020年,國家自然科學基金青年科學基金項目的平均資助率為16.2%。在受理基金申請的八個學部中,趙小凡博士所申請的管理科學部是唯一的社會科學學部,在八個學部中競爭相對激烈,2020年對青年基金項目的資助率僅為14.9%。趙小凡博士的申請項目旨在研究中國企業服從節能減排規制的動因及其作用機制。

 

申請項目摘要︰

本研究從近年來企業具體行動入手,探究企業落實國家節能減排政策的動因及其影響機制,進而解釋當代中國企業與政府關系的一般規律。本研究將企業服從理論從傳統的法律範疇拓展到了政府規章與行政命令的範疇。申請人前期研究表明,由於行政規範性文件以及行政命令本身的不確定以及政府官員所使用的監管工具的不確定,來自政府的彌散威懾是其服從節能監管的重要驅動力。本研究旨在進一步拓展和豐富「彌散威懾」理論︰鑒於近年來中國社會經歷的重大變化,彌散威懾理論是否仍具有解釋力?彌散威懾在何種條件下影響企業服從?除彌散威懾之外是否還有其他影響企業服從的重要動因?申請人計劃訪談山東省、江蘇省、寧夏回族自治區約60家工業企業的負責人,並採用紮根理論、模糊集定性比較分析、以及案例研究等質性研究方法分析訪談數據。本研究不僅致力於對傳統規管服從理論做出貢獻,還希望提供一個觀察當代中國法治進展以及政府企業關系的新視角。