Development Research Centre of the State Council (DRC) provides top quality consulting services for the Central Committee of the Communist Party and the State Council on key policy issues. In 2012, the Centre decided to support several key policy research fields. The purpose is to house leading experts, to improve the key researchers’ ability to carry out policy analyses and consultancy, and to turn the Centre into a reputable think tank in the world.
Social Governance (SGov) is one of the prioritised research interests of the Centre. It is widely acknowledged that “governance” could be defined as the approaches with which stakeholders jointly deal with the common problems they face. Following this line of thinking, the research team defines “social governance” as ways of achieving greater social integration in the context of increasingly consolidated group interests, individualised society and IT-based communication. We will pay particular attention to the following four aspects: the core values that underpin the mainstream society, a package of equitable basic public services, an inclusive mechanism for wider public participation, and effective state policy-making and implementation
There are two main features with our intended research. First, they are issue-based research but with the intention to lead to theoretical development. We focus on the major social issues in the face of dramatic socio-economic transition, conduct comparative analysis of governing strategies and methods in a number of countries and regions, and develop a framework for restructuring social governance when there are rapid social and economic changes. The purpose is to provide evidence-based and practical recommendations for the Chinese leadership. Our analysis of social governance assumes that social governance is an instrument that is not limited to Western democracies, similar to the market, which is not unique to a capitalist economy. Second, we put a great emphasis on multi-disciplinary collaboration. Members of the research team are from different academic fields such as social policy, sociology, political science, public administration, economics and demography. Our research interests cover a wide range of policy areas such as education, health care, social security, non-government organisations, social administration, urban management, community autonomy and administration of the floating population.