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A Discussion on the Local Government’s Ethical Decision-Making

Author: ShangZaiQing
Tutor: WangZuo
School: Zhejiang Normal University
Course: Administration
Keywords: Ethical Decision-Making Mode Local Government Hypothesis Of Economic Man Hypothesis Of Ethics Man Wenzhou Model
CLC: D625
Type: Master's thesis
Year: 2011
Downloads: 14
Quote: 0
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As the civic consciousness grows, the demand on ethical decisions of local governments is higher, and the research of local government ethical decision-making is in urgent need. However, at present in China, government ethics decision-making research is mainly focusing on the speculation of moral norm, descriptive or empirical research of the influence factors in the decision-making process of local government is very insufficient. Instead, the local government decision-making study based on the hypothesis of economic man is very prosperous, it seems that "rational self-interest" can explain all local government behavior. It is in this context, expand the discussion of this article. In the introduction, this article (a) through a review of research on ethical decision-making, clear the definitions of moral issue and ethical decision-making; (b) through a review of two explanations of local government decision-making which on the basis of the hypothesis of economic man (finance incentive and promotion incentive), sort out their internal logic. In chapter II, this article analyses the general defects of these explanations; through the relevant cases of the local government decision-making in the early days’Wenzhou, proof the defects of these explanations with more historical details. Whether finance incentive or promotion incentive, the crux of their problem is that the hypothesis of economic man does not fully apply to local government decision-making analysis. In chapter III, by a thought experiment and analysis of the ethics effect of the hypothesis of economic man, this article rethinks the applicability of this hypothesis in public administrative area; then propose the hypothesis of ethics man which bring both ethics value and self-interest value into to the basic pursuit of humanity, and analysis the effect factors in local government decision-making process base on the new hypothesis such as subjective moral intensity (magnitude of consequences, social consensus, probability of effect, temporal immediacy, proximity and concentration of effect), organization factors (level of the local government, award and punishment, superior governments’commands and policies and code of ethics) and personal factors. Then, this article builds a simple local government decision-making model base on the hypothesis of ethics man. In the fourth chapter, this article explains the local government decision-making in the early days’Wenzhou by this model, and analyses the feasibility that take this model as a general analytical framework for the local government decision-making during the transitional period. Finally, the author propose some policy suggestions:(1) speed up the establishment of the civil service ethics law; (2) adjust the orientation of rewards and punishments, make the local governments give up the GDP-achievement-concept and (3) reform the system of leadership qualification of local government, and promoting the building of democracy.

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CLC: > Political, legal > China's political > Political system and national institutions > Local people's governments
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