Since Max Weber, Confucianism has been widely viewed as being in opposition to capitalist or modern growth in historical China, especially in comparison with the rise of Western Europe after the Protestant Reformation. In pre-19th century China, the absence of industrialization or capitalism is partially attributed to the conservative nature of Confucian culture, particularly the emphasis on the ‘adjustment’ to the world and the depreciation of pursuing wealth, among others. And perhaps more importantly, the clan as a tangible organization of Confucianism restricted interpersonal cooperation to the family or lineage scope. Such ‘kinship-based morality’, in contrast to the ‘generalised morality’ enforced by market institutions in the West, paved the way for China’s divergent developmental path from the West. In a recent study, Zhiwu Chen, Andrew Sinclair and Chicheng Ma find another channel through which Confucianism inhibits capitalism: competition in financial markets.
29 Nov 2021
Dr Hongsong Zhang of HKU Business School and Dr Shengyu Li of University of New South Wales discussed in this VoxChina piece their investigation of the impact of external monitoring from the government on state-owned enterprise performance, using the variation in monitoring strength arising from a nationwide policy change and firms’ geographic location in China. We utilize a structural approach to estimate input prices and productivity separately at the firm level using commonly available production data. We show that enhanced external monitoring, as a key component of corporate governance, can substantially reduce managerial expropriation in procurement and shirking in production management. The results suggest that government monitoring can be an effective policy instrument to improve state-owned enterprise performance.
03 Nov 2021
New research indicates that China’s stock market is leaving behind its casino reputation and is capable of fuelling growth
18 June 2021
Past events can obviously have a profound effect on the future; but can these effects be measured and quantified? Two professors at the HKU Business School, Professor James Kung and Dr Chicheng Ma, and Dr Ting Chen of Hong Kong Baptist University, recently attempted to find out. They co-authored a paper on the impacts of China’s long-lived civil examination, the keju, on the modern-day society and economy of the country. They discovered that success in this ancient examination in particular locations led to a measurable effect on modern economic development in the same locations in the present day.
17 May 2021
The majority of fledgling businesses fly straight into the unforgiving rule of natural selection – only the fittest and strongest survive. In terms of start-ups, the rule is even more merciless. What can start-ups do to succeed in this brutal environment? Professor David Tse, Stelux Professor of Marketing and Director of the Contemporary Marketing Centre at the HKU Business School, believes Breakthrough Innovation (BI) is an effective strategy for success. Simply put, BI fosters strategies that help service new and under-served markets.
Public services touch every aspect of the lives of people around the world. These millions of service users also have opinions, both good and bad, on the quality of the public services they access. But how often are they asked about these opinions? And do these opinions help create changes and improvements to the services?