The Governance and Development of the HKSAR: A Middle Way that Balances “One Country” with “Two Systems” - Albert H. Y. CHEN
Albert H. Y. CHEN
Chan Professor in Constitutional Law, Faculty of Law, University of Hong Kong
【Abstract】This article explains how the Basic Law regulates the constitutional relationship between the Central Government of China and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR), particularly how the Basic Law simultaneously provides for the dual principles of national sovereignty and the HKSAR’s high degree of autonomy. The article then discusses how the Basic Law and the relevant interpretation of the National People’s Congress Standing Committee deals with the question of the gradual democratization of Hong Kong’s political system. Finally, the article considers the question of the election of the Chief Executive by universal suffrage in 2017, and suggests that Hong Kong should pursue a “Middle Way” that is based on both principles of national sovereignty and Hong Kong’s democratic autonomy.
Keywords: Basic Law, sovereignty, autonomy, democracy, universal suffrage
Government-Legislature Relationship and Governance - Jasper Yok Sing TSANG
Jasper Yok Sing TSANG
President, Legislative Council, The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region
【Abstract】The current system cannot provide for an “executive-led” relationship between the Government and the Legislative Council which used to exist before 1985, when the whole Legco was appointed by the Governor. Without constant and reliable support in the Legco, the Government can hardly push ahead with any policy that is controversial but necessary for society’s long-term benefit. To ensure good governance, universal suffrage must be accompanied by effective solutions to problems in various areas, including the role of political parties, election methods for Legco seats, and a mechanism for balancing conflicting interests in the legislature.
Keywords: universal suffrage, effective governance
Political Distrust, Governability and Institutional Deadlock in Hong Kong - Sonny Shiu Hing LO
Sonny Shiu Hing LO
Head and Professor, Department of Social Sciences, The Hong Kong Institute of Education
【Abstract】Since the reversion of its sovereignty from Britain to China on 1 July 1997, Hong Kong has witnessed a serious crisis of legitimacy in terms of both performance and procedural aspects. In terms of performance, the Hong Kong government has been constantly criticized by an assertive mass media, an active civil society, and the ideology of populism, which sees public opinion as of paramount importance. The problem of governability in Hong Kong reveals deep political distrust and institutional deadlock in the special administrative region. Although the Hong Kong government, with the support of the central government in Beijing, tries to tackle the governability problem by considering and promising political reforms, notably the direct election of the Chief Executive in 2017, citizens’ deep political distrust of the government does not bode well for the prospects of governability in Hong Kong. The rise of populism is, arguably, plunging the Hong Kong special administrative region into an unprecedented crisis of legitimacy, which will culminate in 2014 and early 2015, when some democrats vow to mobilize their supporters in the form of a so-called Occupy Central District Movement.
Keywords: political trust, populism, governance, political reform, legitimacy crisis
Political Attitudes and Political Participation of Hong Kong Youth - Victor ZHENG
Co-Director, Centre for Social and Political Development Studies, Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
Po San WAN
Research Officer, Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
Research Associate, Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
【Abstract】In the past, the political attitudes and political participation of young people in Hong Kong were seldom considered to be social issues. Recently, however, the increased involvement of Hong Kong youth in political activities has attracted public attention. Drawing on data from various social surveys conducted by the Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, this paper explores the views of young people in Hong Kong regarding current socio-economic-political developments, democratization, their political aspirations, and their actual political behaviour and make a comparison with earlier generations. Through statistical analysis, this paper offers solid explanations for the recent phenomenon of increased political engagement among Hong Kong youth, which will broaden our understanding of their political ideals and the socio-political environment of Hong Kong.
Keywords: political attitude, political participation, youth and society, social survey
Autonomy, Self-Governance and Social Participation: Some Patterns of Civil Society Development in Hong Kong - Hon Fai CHEN
Hon Fai CHEN
Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology and Social Policy, Lingnan University
【Abstract】This article seeks to clarify the concept of civil society and analyse its developmental patterns in Hong Kong since the post-war era. On the basis of previous studies on this subject, the article demonstrates that the origin of Hong Kong civil society can be traced back to the proliferation of social movements and pressure groups in the 1970s. These civil society groups were eventually transformed into political parties or subvented social service organizations in the 1980s and 90s, with a corresponding shift in tactics from mass mobilization to institutionalized exchange with the government. The article proposes that social enterprise, if properly understood as a community-based, participatory movement rather than a top-down project of public management, can serve to enhance the autonomy and self-governance of civil society, without thereby running into the blind alley of unyielding confrontation and social polarization.
Keywords: civil society, NGOs, pressure groups, social enterprise, social movement
The Rise of Transgressive Contention by Young Activists: Recent Cases in Hong Kong - Nick Hin Kin OR Calvin Hiu Ming LAU
Nick Hin Kin OR
Senior Research Associate, Department of Public Policy, City University of Hong Kong
Calvin Hiu Ming LAU
MAPPM 2013 graduate, Department of Public Policy, City University of Hong Kong
【Abstract】This article looks at the causes of the prevalent transgressive contentions initiated by young activists in recent years in Hong Kong. Three cases are examined and compared: the rise of the League of Social Democrats and People Power, Local Actions, and Scholarism. By studying the macro, meso, and micro aspects of the cases, we argue that the rise of youth transgressive contention is not just a consequence of adverse sentiments and broader socioeconomic conditions —— worsening social mobility and economic prospects, higher levels of education, emergence of critical citizens, HK-China integration, and distrust towards the HKSAR government. In addition, the organizational strength and networking among societal actors, the recruitment and nurturing process of these organizations, and their framing strategy are determinants of the outburst of youth activism in Hong Kong.
Keywords: contentious politics, transgressive contention, political participation, youth activism, young activists