Public participation in China: Sustainable urbanization and governance

Bert Enserink*, Joop Koppenjan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

141 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose - The purpose of this research is to focus on the governance aspects of China's environmental policy making and the conditions for meaningful public participation in sustainable urbanization policy making. China is facing a big urbanization challenge. Rapid economic growth and inefficient use of natural resources lead to excessive pollution and rapid depletion of China's natural resources. Water scarcity, especially in the north-eastern part of the country, already is a big problem. The Chinese government has formulated policies and legislation to protect the environment and to produce a more sustainable growth, but implementation is lagging. Moreover, rapid modernization of Chinese society also led to first experiments with the organization of public hearings on environmental issues. Design/methodology/approach - Literature is presented on governance and public participation in environmental policy making supplemented with material from case study research and expert meetings in China. Findings - The findings show the interrelatedness of environmental governance and public participation, which leads to policy recommendations for public participation in sustainable urbanization processes. Originality/value - This paper highlights the potential environmental gains through public participation in sustainable urbanization strategy policy in China.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)459-474
Number of pages16
JournalManagement of Environmental Quality: An International Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2007


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