This chapter takes stock of the practical realities and legal framework surrounding religious freedom and persecution in China under the leadership of Xi Jinping with regard to seven major religious groups—Chinese Buddhism, Taoism, Catholicism, Protestantism, Islam, Tibetan Buddhism and Falun Gong. The author argues that three features of the environment for religious freedom in China are notable in the context of a discussion of human rights. First, there is a large discrepancy between law and practice, including between China’s international human rights commitments and the day-to-day actions of its government. Second, China is home to ongoing and severe violations of internationally-recognized aspects of religious freedom. Third, while some restrictions on freedom of religious practice and belief touch all faiths in China, there is very uneven implementation of government policies across geographic, ethnic and religious lines, resulting in a wide diversity of treatment and experience among believers.
This chapter by Sarah Cook reviews the role of the international organizations in promoting social investment. This chapter explores the ways in which a ‘social investment’ approach and terminology has been adopted and promoted by selected international development organizations, including international financial institutions, the United Nations, European Union and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, as well as some international non-governmental organizations. It focuses on the period since the 1990s, when a ‘social turn’ in development policy emerged as a reaction to the devastating social consequences of Washington Consensus adjustment policies, foreshadowing the global commitment to poverty reduction through the Millenium Development Goals and the evolution of a range of new policy instruments to deliver on this social agenda; most notably through targeted and conditional cash transfers.. International organizations have played a significant role in the spread of such ideas and practices which can be identified with the social investment approach, if not always labelled as such. The widespread promotion of these new instruments in development contexts, however, tends to obscure significant differences in goals, values and approaches among organizations. While often justified in social investment terms, a strong theoretical case for the use of such instruments as development policy is lacking. Instead, the case is largely grounded in evidence of ‘what works’ for short-term results linked to organizational priorities, notably poverty alleviation, impacts on specific groups (women, children) and behavioural change (such as use of health and education services). Key words: social investment, international social welfare, international development organizations
Sarah Cook and Xiao-yuan Dong
This chapter examines welfare changes in reform era China through the lens of care – that is, the daily and generational work of reproduction essential for the functioning of society and the economy. During the Mao era, care roles and responsibilities were largely socialized, enabling women to enter the labour force in vast numbers while also contributing to rapid improvements in a range of welfare indicators. The reform era has seen the work of care largely returned to the domestic sphere, with households providing care with unpaid (predominantly female) labour, or accessing care services through the market. These changes have significant implications for women’s choices around work, family and fertility, as well as for the welfare of care recipients. Market reforms and the commodification of care services affect the provision and quality of care services, the nature of care work and the status of its providers. The chapter sheds light on the gendered nature of welfare systems, and the wide-ranging implications of how care is delivered and financed: on the welfare and opportunities of women as carers; and on the wellbeing of those in need of care, as well as on broader economic, social and demographic outcomes.
Sarah S. Willen and Jennifer Cook
Whose health deserves our attention, investment, or care? Answers to this everyday question of health-related deservingness – the question of ‘who deserves what, and why’ in the health domain – play a pivotal, if implicit, role in debates about society’s obligations to migrants and members of other vulnerable groups. Different stakeholders – legislators and policymakers, clinicians and healthcare institutions, the media and ordinary citizens – reckon migrants’ deservingness in different ways, and these competing moral stances have concrete effects in the domains of law, policy, public health, and clinical care. This chapter presents a framework for analysing debates about health-related deservingness, then applies it to recent debates in each of three migration settings: North America, Europe and the Middle East. The chapter concludes with a call for broad-ranging, interdisciplinary inquiry into how health-related deservingness is reckoned and the impact of different stakeholder assessments not only on migrants, but also on the communities in which they live.