Villagers’ Self-Governance in Rural China



Grassroots self-governance has a long history in rural China. The currently implemented villagers’ self-governance system was established after the abolishment of the people’s commune system in 1978. It is in nature a grassroots governance system, which enables rural residents to directly engage in public affairs. Being of modern democratic significance, villagers’ self-governance has been recognized by relevant laws of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). And its implementation paves the way for rural residents to exercise their democratic rights and for the Chinese government to organize its rural society. Since its establishment, villagers’ self-governance has experienced continuous expansion and deepening. Accordingly, the study of villagers’ self-governance has shifted from “value-institution paradigm” to “form-condition paradigm.” As the rural society changes, villagers’ self-governance is going to exhibit new features during its development process.


  1. Rong, Jingben. “Villagers’ Self-governance – the Butterfly of Democracy is Flying,” Inside Information on Economic Reform, 1998 (3).Google Scholar
  2. Shen, Yansheng. “The Rise, Fall and Reconstruction of Village Governance”, Strategy and Management, 1998 (6).Google Scholar
  3. Dang, Guoying. “Is Villagers’ Self-governance the Starting Point of Socialist Democracy?”, Strategy and Management, 1999 (1).Google Scholar
  4. Peng, Zhen, “Practicing Direct Democracy at Grassroots Level through Mass Self-governance”, Selected Works of Peng Zhen (1941–1990), People’s Publishing House, 1991: 610–611.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yong Xu
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of China Rural Studies, Central China Normal UniversityWuhanChina

Personalised recommendations