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“Reading China”

The Internet of Things, Surveillance, and Social Management in the PRC
Pieter Velghe
p. 85-89


The “informatisation” agenda of the CCP calls upon a wide range of ICTs to transform everything from manufacturing to social management. The umbrella of versatile Internet of Things technology therefore serves as a key component of policy makers’ efforts to further digitalisation. This paper explores claims that Chinese ICT policy appropriates the Internet of Things to improve surveillance and social management in order to increase the governing capacity of the Chinese state apparatus. Finally, the paper discusses the emerging credit systems in the face of a shift towards digitalisation and reliance on data-driven analysis, and the increased attention given to cyber security that results from the Chinese state’ reliance on technology.

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Bibliographical reference

Pieter Velghe, « “Reading China” », China Perspectives, 2019-1 | 2019, 85-89.

Electronic reference

Pieter Velghe, « “Reading China” », China Perspectives [Online], 2019-1 | 2019, Online since 19 March 2019, connection on 24 September 2020. URL : ; DOI :

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About the author

Pieter Velghe

Pieter Velghe is a Sinologist at the Belgian Embassy in Beijing. All opinions expressed in this article are strictly those of the author. Its contents have not been reviewed nor approved by the Belgian Federal Public Service Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation.

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