Chintrepreneurship – The China-way of Entrepreneurship Government Intervention, Seedling Approach – A Network-based Model of Entrepreneurship

Jiangning Zhao, Bin Zhang


The development of entrepreneurship in China is coined in this paper as the ‘Chintrepreneurship’, namely, the
China-way of entrepreneurship, which is defined synthetically as an integral result of ideological transformation,
industrial institutionalization and privatization, and technological transition from imitation and innovation. From an
evolutionary perspective, China-way of entrepreneurship is resulted from the three-staged economic reformation.
From a dialectic perspective, government intervention is not only a driver but also an obstacle to the formation of
China-way of entrepreneurship, which is outlined as a compounded effect of dual-track policy, financial policy, FDI
policy, science, technology, and innovation policy, education and human capital policy. As an exploratory study and
relying on an in-depth and extensive literature review, on-site observations and thousands of interviews, this paper
endeavors to establish a theoretical framework, to contour the taxonomy and the four constraints, and to distinguish
the formational mechanism of China-way of entrepreneurship from the previously defined ones. Theoretically, this
paper proposes a need for a paradigm shift from polarized (Washington Consensus) to de-polarized (Beijing
Consensus), and argues that, the network-based framework (aka: the neo-classical economics) fits to rationalize the
peculiarity and mechanism of China-way of entrepreneurship, uniquely incubated from the politically autocratic,
bureaucratic and cronyism oriented social and institutional systems. This paper concludes that entrepreneurship does
exist in China, and that, government intervention and seedling approach serve as strategic and exogenous forces,
while imitation and low marginal price act as tactical and endogenous factors – together, they constitute the
developmental mechanism of CHINTREPRENEURSHIP, in parallel with economic transition, from traditionally the
global production networks (GPNs) to presently the global production and trade networks (GPTNs), from
manufacturing-based to service and consumption oriented. From the perspective of Darwin’s ‘survival of the fittest’,
criticism is definitely needed, in order to legitimize the theory of CHINTREPRENEURSHIP.

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