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Chinese Small Property: The Co-Evolution of Law and Social Norms
Published by Cambridge University Press
Qiao demonstrates how an impersonal and unbounded market can operate without legal protection or enforcement of property and contract rights.
Small property houses provide living space to about eight million migrant workers, office space for start-ups, grassroots police stations and public schools; their contribution to the economic growth and urbanization of a city is immense. The interaction between the small property sector and the formal legal order has a long history and small property has become an established engine of social and legal change. Chinese Small Property presents vivid stories about how institutional entrepreneurs worked together to create an impersonal market outside of the formal legal system to support millions of transactions. Qiao uses an eleven-month fieldwork project in Shenzhen - China's first special economic zone that has grown to a mega city with over fifteen million people - to demonstrate this. A thorough and detailed investigation into small property rights in China, Chinese Small Property is an invaluable source of new information for students and scholars of the field.
Introduction; 1. The evolution of land law in China: partial reform, vested interests, and small property; 2. Planting houses in Shenzhen; 3. Small property, big market: a focal point explanation; 4. Small property, adverse possession and optional law; 5. Small property in transition: a tale of two villages; 6. All quiet on the judicial front?; Conclusion: market transition: sticky norms or sticky law?
Shitong Qiao is Assistant Professor of Law at The University of Hong Kong and New York University Global Professor of Law, fall 2017. Qiao graduated from top Chinese and US law schools with numerous prizes, including the Top Academic Prize of Peking University and the Judge Ralph K. Winter Prize of Yale University, Connecticut. He regularly advises government agencies, inside and outside China, on Chinese land regime. His publications on property and social norms have appeared in leading English and Chinese law journals.
Reviewer: Paul Doolan
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