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Title: Affirmative action, ethnic minorities and China's universities
Authors: Sautman, Barry
Keywords: Ethnic minorities
University admission
Preferential policies
Youhui zhengce
Issue Date: 20-May-1997
Citation: Paper to be presented at the fifth conference of the Chinese Studies Association of Australia July 16-18, 1997
Series/Report no.: Working Papers in the Social Sciences ; No. 13
Abstract: Minorities made up nine percent of China’s population in 1995 (110 million people). Minority areas take up two-thirds of the PRC and have the bulk of its natural resources. PRC leaders see state sponsored preferential policies (youhui zhence) as vital to the cohesion of the minority areas. While the preferential policies programs date from 1949, this “affirmative action” policy has been explicit only from the mid-1980’s. Prominent among these policies has been preferential admission to universities. Economic reforms have thus far not reversed the policy of affirmative action in higher education. The absolute number of minority graduates has slowly increased. Yet the percentage of minority students lags behind that of minorities in the general population and appears to be decreasing. Minority university graduates tend to seek economic opportunities outside their native regions.
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