Home  >  Research Achievements  >  Content

Beyond Government Control of China's Standardization System — History, Current Status, and Reform Suggestions

Time: 2019-01-22 14:03:30 Author: 管理员 Hits:






The book provides new insights for policy debates on how to strengthen the gains from trade for innovation through an inclusive trading environment that facilitates access to knowledge for all. Rising economic nationalism, especially in the United States, creates new challenges to an enlightened globalization agenda.


The US government has withdrawn from the Transpacific Partnership agreement (TPP) that once was considered to be the gold standard of megaregionalism, suggesting the need to highlight once again the critical role that international trade and investment play in fostering sustainable growth and prosperity. Fostering innovation and facilitating the links between trade and innovation are becoming increasingly important for developed and developing economies alike. But equally important are economic policies to ensure that gains and losses from trade for innovation are shared by all.


The book is a must read for trade economists, innovation economists, trade negotiators, trade lawyers, and academicians interested in current transformations in the global economy and their impact on innovation and economic growth.


For the academic paper, it traces the ancient beginnings of standardization in China; the more recent evolution of standardization within the Chinese system, including the formation of governmental management systems in the planned economy period; the adjustment of the system after the period of reform and opening-up; and an overview of the current standardization system, the evolution of the government-dominated standardization strategy, and its achievements and weaknesses. This chapter argues that the top-down, government-centered standardization system, which was instrumental to China’s successful catching-up, now needs to adjust to new challenges.


The current standardization management system of the government was primarily formed during the planned economy period and is deeply rooted in Chinese tradition and history. The reform measures and the strategies adopted by the successive Chinese governments in the field of standardiza-tion have proven to be generally successful in the country’s economic development. The technology path-following strategy and the standarddual-adoption policy”, adopted at the initial stages of the period of reform and opening-up (1980–2000), allowed for a great deal of technology transfer in the process of standardization. Standardization became an effective  channel for the technology spillover effect through international trade.


In China’s period of rapid economic development (2000–2010), the strategy of using standardization to foster and promote indigenous innovation by the government was also very effective, and weaknesses in this system were not obvious during that period. However, after the slowdown in economic growth started (2010–2015), problems caused by the government’s role in standardization have become increasingly prominent, including excessive governmental intervention as well as institutional fragmentation and multi-ple decision-making entities within the government, creating discordance and hindering innovation. The authors argue that government withdrawal, for the most part, from voluntary standardization management is a prerequi-site for cultivating self-organized private standardization.


Details and the book's website can be found at: 



Recently, the new academic paper of CISTP professors Zheng Liang and Ping Wang, Beyond Government Control of China's Standardization System — History, Current Status, and Reform Suggestions, was published in Book Megaregionalism 2.0 Trade and Innovation within Global Networks of World Scientific Studies in International Economics.