Class Year


Document Type

Student Research Paper

Date of Creation

Fall 2017

Department 1

East Asian Studies


Disasters are life-altering events for any country. Every country around the world suffers from various kinds of disasters, whether produced by natural or human forces. The impact that these disasters have on people’s lives makes the topic of disaster relief and management a critical one for all governments around the globe; China is certainly no exception to the importance of disaster relief policy. As a country that has fallen victim to many disasters in recent memory, its disaster relief policy is one that has been analyzed at length by scholars around the world. In this piece, I seek to analyze the factors that contributed to the evolution of China’s disaster relief policies over the past few decades, in addition to the effects of these disasters on Chinese society. I argue that there are five main factors that have driven changes in this policy sector: institutional structure and centralization of power, media and technological advances in the realm of communication, international factors (foreign aid, pressures from the international community, and the Olympics), the historical concept of performance legitimation, and the development of civil society.


Written as a senior thesis in East Asian Studies.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.