YCW Shanghai welcomes Selina Ho to lead a talk about why China provides a higher level of public goods than India. She will discuss her forthcoming book on how China and India differ in their approach to providing education, healthcare, public transportation, and access to basic necessities, such as drinking water and electricity.

In her latest book, “Thirsty Cities: Social Contracts and Public Goods Provision in China and India”, Selina argues that regime type does not determine public goods outcomes. Using empirical evidence from the Chinese and Indian municipal water sectors, she will outline how social contracts, an informal institution, influences formal institutional design, which in turn accounts for the variations in public goods provision.

The talk will be followed by Q&A and a networking session over drinks and snacks.


Selina Ho
Selina Ho is Assistant Professor at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore (NUS). She specializes in Chinese politics and foreign policy, with a focus on water, infrastructure, and comparative politics.
She is author of “Thirsty Cities: Social Contracts and Public Goods Provision in China and India “(Cambridge University Press, 2019) and is currently co-authoring another book project on China’s high-speed railway projects in Southeast Asia, which is funded by the Smith Richardson Foundation.
Selina was appointed Global Futures Council Fellow at the World Economic Forum and was a public servant in Singapore before joining academia. Selina received both her Ph.D. and Masters Degree from the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) at Johns Hopkins University, and her Undergraduate Degree from NUS. She was a postdoctoral fellow at New York University (NYU) Shanghai before joining the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy.


Shanghai : China and India – Thirsty Cities and the Delivery of Public Goods [Thursday, November 8]
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