Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to establish a synthetic evaluation index system of new socialist countryside (NSC) development at county level in China, and by which to evaluate the level of NSC construction among different regions in China. Then, some problems of rural development can be found and corresponding measures can be proposed, which could provide references for policymaking. Design/methodology/approach – First, from agricultural, rural and farmers' perspective, a preliminary index system which containing 44 indicators was put forward. Then, combining with a series of subjective and objective indicator screening methods, such as fuzzy synthetic evaluation, clustering analysis, correlation and variation coefficient analysis, the final index system containing 22 indicators was established. Third, combining with factor analysis, the final index system was used to evaluate the level of NSC construction in 28 counties of China in 2007. Finally, we calculated district factor scores by a model and gave an aggregate index ranking of different regions. Findings – NSC construction at county level is not well developed in China and there are significant geographical differences among different districts. First, NSC construction in Shanghai, Beijing, Nanjing, Guangzhou and Hangzhou is relatively better. Second, NSC construction of East China is better than that of North China and Central China. Northeast of China is better than Southwest and Northwest. Third, NSC construction in municipalities is higher than non‐municipalities. Rural development in Western regions of China needs to be paid special attention. Originality/value – A final evaluation index system including 22 indicators was designed. These indicators are complete, independent, weakly correlative and stable. The index system can be further applied to evaluate other regions' NSC development. The evaluation results can provide useful references for NSC reform in the whole nation.
China Agricultural Economic Review – Emerald Publishing
Published: Sep 6, 2011
Keywords: China; Regional development; Rural regions; New socialist countryside; Evaluation index system; Indicator screening; Synthetic evaluation
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