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The Trend of «Socializing Social Welfare» Policy in China

A study on Service Quality and Social Capital in the Society-run Home for the Aged in Beijing

Hua Ding

China has one-fifth of the world’s total elderly population. This rapidly aging population presents serious challenges to the state to develop a social service system. To satisfy increasing demands for diversified and continuous care, a policy known as «Socializing social welfare» was introduced to assist in the reformation of social services. Under the policy, private and non-government sectors are encouraged to provide social services that were previously monopolized by the government. The most significant result of the reform is the growth of Society-run Home for the Aged (SRH) that aimes to provide fee-based institutional care for the elderly. This study examines service quality in the emergent SRH from the perspective of residents and, in the context of «Socializing Social Welfare» policy reform, explores the influence of social capital in the SRH on service quality. With the findings of the study, possible strategies on policy-making and clarification of government’s responsibility are inspired. Moreover, the analysis on social capital reveales the core problems of care service in the SRH and suggestes useful measures for improvement.
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Chapter Three: Research Questions, Hypotheses, and Theoretical Framework


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Chapter Three Research Questions, Hypotheses, and Theoretical Framework

3.1 Introduction

As discussed in the first chapter, the author chooses this topic for three main reasons. The first is the rapid population aging in mainland China in recent years and the increasing demands of the elderly for institutional care. The second is the fast growth of society-run homes for the aged (SRHs) in recent years following the introduction of the “Socializing Social Welfare” policy. SRHs are very special social service agencies that are called “non-profit” organizations by the government but, in fact, have quite different organizational goals. The third is the neglect by officials and researchers of the conditions in this type of emerging social service institutions and quality of life of the elderly residents.

In accordance with the focus of the study and based upon a review of the existing literature on the critical concepts, research questions and hypotheses are presented and explained in this chapter. And then, with reference to the literature review, the theoretical framework of dimensions and domains of service quality in the SRH is proposed for guiding practical measurement and for further testing. Finally, the theoretical framework of factors affecting service quality in the SRH is illustrated. Moreover, relationships between identified factors and service quality are interpreted and showed in the figure.

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