Contingent participation: media-citizen interaction in Wenzhou’s “Civil monitory organization”

Zhuang, Meixi and Zhang, Xiaoling and Morgan, Stephen (2017) Contingent participation: media-citizen interaction in Wenzhou’s “Civil monitory organization”. Journal of Contemporary China . ISSN 1469-9400 (In Press)

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Abstract

Mass media play an important role in grassroots democracy, yet the dynamics of media-citizen interaction remains under-researched. Using the case of “Civil Monitory Organization” (CMO) program in Zhejiang’s Wenzhou city, we show how local media and the local government to whom the local media are held accountable shape citizen participation. We develop the framework of “contingent participation” to analyze the constraints on local political participation. Based on our observation of the CMO activism, we typologize four participation behaviours: (1) symbolic participation, (2) instrumental participation, (3) managed participation, and (4) transgressive participation. We conclude that contingent participation yields paradoxical results inherent under authoritarian rule: it aims to mobilize citizens to solve governance problems, yet denies the free flow of information and full participation of citizens.

Item Type: Article
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Social Sciences > School of Politics and International Relations
Depositing User: Eprints, Support
Date Deposited: 09 May 2017 13:24
Last Modified: 07 Aug 2017 10:20
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/42677

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