China and Inner Asia

Organized Panel Session

3 - Explaining the Transformation and Evolution of Central State Enterprises through War and Revolution: A Case Study of Dadukou Iron and Steel Works in Chongqing, 1937-1957

Friday, March 23
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Location: Roosevelt Room 2, Exhibit Level

The Dadukou Iron and Steel Works was established in Hankou in 1938 and relocated to Chongqing soon after that.  Over the course of the Sino-Japanese War, it evolved into the largest state-owned enterprise in Guomindang-controlled areas with more than 20,000 employees, including 7000 employees in its Chongqing headquarters.  I have argued that the DISW’s basic institutional arrangement consisted of bureaucratic governance, distinctive management and incentive mechanisms (such as cost accounting and work emulation campaign), and the provision of social services and welfare.  This was a model that extended to other central state enterprises, taking shape during the Sino-Japanese War.  Drawing on extensive archival and other published material, this paper extends the study of these state enterprises from the wartime period to the late 1950s.  It examines changes that occurred in the DISW during these decades, paying particular attention to post-1949 changes in enterprise governance, authority structure, management and incentive mechanisms, and the provision of social services and welfare.  How and why did the Chinese Communists maintain, built on, and expand or modify DISW’s existing institutions and structures?  How did authority structure change within the DISW after 1949? To what extent did elements of such an authority structure remain intact? To what extent did pre-1949 management and incentive mechanisms survive the Communist Revolution?  In examining the development of these institutional factors from the wartime through the early People’s Republic, this paper will contribute to the debate on the meaning of the Chinese Revolution.

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3 - Explaining the Transformation and Evolution of Central State Enterprises through War and Revolution: A Case Study of Dadukou Iron and Steel Works in Chongqing, 1937-1957



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