, Volume 16, Issue 3, pp 213-219

The environmental awareness of environmental protection bureaucrats in the People's Republic of China

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Summary

Over 180 environmental protection bureaucrats in the People's Republic of China were individually interviewed to determine their environmental awareness and their attitudes towards the environment. The study indicates that environmental protection bureaucrats in China have conflicting attitudes towards the relationship between man and nature, and between economic growth and environmental protection. However, they show a strong faith in science and technology's ability to solve environmental problems. The perception that too-harsh environmental protection regulations would reduce the growth potential of the economy is so predominant that it poses a serious threat to the environment of the three municipalities under investigation. It is argued that environmental management is a matter of managing human beings. To understand people, it is imperative to gain a thorough understanding of their worldview.

Dr Koon-Kwai Wong is an Associate Professor in the Department of Geography and the Geography option co-ordinator on the China Studies course at Hong Kong Baptist University. Dr Hon S. Chan is an Associate Professor in the Department of Public and Social Administration at the City University of Hong Kong, 83 Tat Chee Avenue, Kowloon, Hong Kong.