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Chinese Political System in Eric Li’s TED Talk

The TED talk by Eric Li on the benefits of the Chinese political system claims that it possesses three defining characteristics: Adaptability, meritocracy, and legitimacy. He proves that the system is capable of adaptability based on how many different approaches the party had taken throughout the years, and the results it managed to achieve between the 1950s and 2010s. His claims are suspect, however, as the opposing claims about the system being rigid do not suggest that change in it is impossible – only that it takes longer and harder to perform. The idea of meritocracy is an interesting one. On the one hand, working for 20-30 years in the system before achieving the highest office does provide the candidate with the qualifications to run a country. On the other hand, the so-called “mentorship” system, is, effectively, an internal clanship. Advancing forward without the support of high-ranking officials sounds very difficult. Said support is bought by loyalty. Finally, his claims of legitimacy are supported by social surveys, the results of which are being taken in a country with very low freedom of speech rating.

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The Chinese party system is the only way of political promotion and upward mobility in China, from the looks of it. Nearly all successful people in the country are either connected to it or have a place in its hierarchy. While meritocracy, to a degree, is a key purpose of such an institution, its other purpose is to ensure no individuals with “wrong” beliefs or conflicting loyalties get to change things. So far, it successfully managed to stir the country towards growth, but Chinese living standards are still vastly behind most developed nations. Whether it will be able to continue its growth in the long-term perspective remains to be seen.

Companies that want to do business in China need to respect the strong traditionalism, exceptionalism, and self-reliance of the Chinese culture. It is best not to challenge or oppose their worldviews, promote their values, implement local hires over foreign ones, and maintain a pleasant political demeanor when dealing with state gents. No company in China is disconnected from politics in one way or another. The government is interested in making companies stay, therefore those entering the market should have long-term goals in mind.

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StudyCorgi. (2022, July 25). Chinese Political System in Eric Li’s TED Talk. Retrieved from https://studycorgi.com/chinese-political-system-in-eric-lis-ted-talk/

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StudyCorgi. (2022, July 25). Chinese Political System in Eric Li’s TED Talk. https://studycorgi.com/chinese-political-system-in-eric-lis-ted-talk/

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StudyCorgi. "Chinese Political System in Eric Li’s TED Talk." July 25, 2022. https://studycorgi.com/chinese-political-system-in-eric-lis-ted-talk/.

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StudyCorgi. 2022. "Chinese Political System in Eric Li’s TED Talk." July 25, 2022. https://studycorgi.com/chinese-political-system-in-eric-lis-ted-talk/.

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StudyCorgi. (2022) 'Chinese Political System in Eric Li’s TED Talk'. 25 July.

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