This book examines the government of Hong Kong since its handover to mainland China in 1997, focusing in particular on the anti-government mass protests and mobilisations in the years since 2003. It argues that Hong Kong has been poorly governed since transferring to Chinese rule, and that public frustration with governmental performance, including anti-subversion laws and slow democratisation, has resulted in the regular and massive protests, which have been rare in Hong Kong's past political development. The book then assesses different explanations for Hong Kong's government problems, including lack of social cohesion, incomplete economic restructuring, structural budgetary deficit, severe social inequality, intensifying cronyism and deficiencies within the political system itself. It goes on to discuss the implications of poor governance for legislative elections, civil society and constitutional development, and considers the prospects for the future. It argues that although in the short-term the Hong Kong government has managed to maintain its popular support ratings, in the longer run it is unlikely to be able to maintain its legitimacy in dealing with the fundamental challenges of government unless the current system is replaced by popular election of the government with appropriate institutional capacity and political powers.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Hong Kong in Crisis under Chinese Sovereignty Ming Sing 1. Who Can Mobilize Hong Kong People to Protest? A Survey-based Study of Three Large-Scale Rallies Joseph Man Chan and Francis L. F. Lee 2. Civil Society’s Dual Impetus – Mobilizations, Representations and Contestations over the First of July March in 2003 Agnes Shuk-mei Ku 3. Governance Crisis and Social Mobilization of the Christian Churches in Hong Kong Shun-hing Chan 4. Social Cohesion and Governance Problems in the Tung Chee-hwa Era Joseph Chan and Elaine Chan 5. Hong Kong at the Crossroads: Public Pressure for Democratic Reform Ming Sing 6. The Days after the End of the Asian Miracle: the Budget Crisis of Hong Kong Wilson Wong 7. Social Mobilization, Blame Avoidance, and Welfare Restructuring in Hong Kong Eliza W.Y. Lee 8. The External Challenge of Hong Kong's Governance: Global Responsibility for a World City Lucy M. Cummings and James T.H. Tang 9. Electoral Structures and Public Opinion in the 2004 Hong Kong Legislative Council Elections Michael E. DeGolyer 10. An Unexpected Chapter Two of Hong Kong’s Constitution: New Players and New Strategies Benny Y.T. Tai
Ming Sing is Associate Professor at Hong Kong University of Science & Technology. His publications include Hong Kong's Tortuous Democratization: a Comparative Analysis (2004), and Hong Kong Government and Politics (2003).