'This is a very rich monograph, based on impressive fieldwork in China, which demonstrates excellent qualitative and ethnographic research skills, research integrity, and cultural perceptiveness in the analysis. This book will make a great contribution to the literature on policy transfer and and policy mobilities, and on urban politics in contemporary China, as it offers a rich understanding of the nitty-gritty practices of transferring and learning 'from abroad'.'
Claire Colomb, Professor of Urban Studies and Planning at the University College London, UK.
This book explores the concept of Careful Urban Renewal, a concept of urban renewal that originated in Berlin in the 1980s and that was proposed to Yangzhou, a Chinese city of the wealthy province of Jiangsu, in the early 2000s. It sets out to understand whether knowledge and ideas originating in a specific setting can be transferred to another locality thousands of miles away from the point of origin, and have the chance to change the policies and the practices of the destination city. The book shows that foreign ideas can inspire ambitious reforms of the policies of a single city, but that there also exist multiple challenges to policy learning and to the rooting of new ideas in local practices. To explore these challenges, this book develops an analysis of the micro-dynamics of policy transfer, showing that there exist multiple hierarchies to which a Chinese city can be subjected, intermittently opening or closing 'windows for policy learning'.
Giulia C. Romano is Researcher at the Institute of East-Asian Studies of the University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany. Her research focuses on policy diffusion in the field of urban governance and she has researched Political Science at Sciences Po - Paris. Her previous book (with Jean-François Di Meglio) is China's Energy Security: A Multidimensional Perspective (2016).