The Problems Faced by China in Devising an Online Landscapewith Chinese Characteristics
China has become the second largest internet user in the world.This fact is primarily due to the country’s rapid economicgrowth, especially in the telecommunication industry, but what doesthis fact mean? Although the growth of the internet in China can beread as a positive sign, my thesis addresses questions having to dowith the development of an online landscape within China. Itaddresses such issues as whether or not information technologiesare a liberating force for democracy in China, or whether or notthey have lead to an increase in governmental control; moreover,what is the relationship between information technologies and thecurrent status of the digital divide in China? These questions willbe addressed within the thesis.Finally, my thesis explores the unique ways the internet hasimpacted the development of society and the political economy ofChina. The Chinese government has long faced big political,economic, and social challenges as a result of the sudden growth ofthe Internet and telecommunication industry. What does the futurehold for a country that lacks a free information market; are theeffects of a loosened communication system likely to changeChina’s political economy, and if so in what ways? My thesisargues that the net results, either positive or negative, of therapid growth of the Internet industry in China will depend on howfast it can make the transition to a political regime based on therule of law and limited government.
School Location:USA - Ohio
Source Type:Master's Thesis
Keywords:internet development china telecommunication digital divide
Date of Publication:01/01/2005