Governing the commons of China: 2018 Commons Workshop
The tragedy of the Chinese commons seems omnipresent. But how is it and how should it be governed? On October 13 Copernicus Assistant Professor Frank van Laerhoven was a keynote speaker at the Tsinghua University Conference on Chinese Commons.
TRAGEDY OF THE CHINESE COMMONS OMNIPRESENT
China harbors one fifth of the world population. Yet, if or how the sharing of natural and man-made systems leads to problems remains largely unknown. Still, it appears that the tragedy of the Chinese commons is omnipresent. There is widespread pollution of its air, water and soil, depletion of ground water and fisheries, desertification, collapse of surface irrigation and challenges of the urban commons.
On October 13 2018, Copernicus Assistant Professor Frank van Laerhoven from Utrecht University was a keynote speaker at the Tsinghua University Conference on Chinese Commons. The event was organized by Professor Yahua Wang of Tsinghua University’s School of Public Policy & Management.
AN INNOVATIVE APPROACH TO GOVERNING ITS COMMONS
China’s approach to governing its commons is innovative and combines market solutions (e.g. water and carbon markets), taxes and rebates, regulations and direct government intervention. The Conference at Tsinghua showed that it makes sense to start analyzing many of the environmental problems that China faces from a commons angle. It also showed that the uniqueness of China calls for an adjustment of the concepts and tools that conventional commons scholarship is using. Professor Wang is assembling a team to do just that!