Department of Politics and Society

The CatCh Network

Ruling through Division: Categorizing People and Resources in Contemporary China

The CatCh Network - Ruling through Division: Categorizing People and Resources in Contemporary China. Photo: A Child standing at the line dividing party members from the masses at an election for Party Secretary in Jiepai village, Qionglai County, Sichuan, China in 2007 © Jesper Willaing Zeuthen

Photo: A Child standing at the line dividing party members from the masses at an election for Party Secretary in Jiepai village, Qionglai County, Sichuan, China in 2007 © Jesper Willaing Zeuthen

Why Forming the CatCh Network

China’s social credit system has introduced a new system of electronic black-listing which has attracted much attention in Western studies of the system. While the digitalization of such categorization is novel, categorization of people and their resources into large manageable, easy to identify categories as a means of organizing China has a long history. Historically such categories have taken many forms. Many of these historical forms are central to social organization and well- documented, e.g. the household registration (hukou) system, clans, gender and ethnicity. The different forms of categorizations, are, however, rarely studied together, and the impact of new technologies and new ideas on existing forms of classifications is unknown.

Join Us

If you are interested in becoming part of the network, please contact Jesper Willaing Zeuthen (zeuthen@dps.aau.dk).


Reclassifying rural land to urban land in Qionglai, Sichuan, 2007 © Mette Willaing Zeuthen

Aim

The aim of the CatCh network is to provide an open platform for conceptualizing how different forms of categorization work as an original and innovative means of identifying and controlling people and resources in China, and how people on the ground, state authorities and commercial agencies apply and reconfigure existing or emerging categories to change or maintain their roles in society. The CatCh network mainly works with primary sources in Chinese.

Funding

The interdisciplinary research network CatCh is funded by the Independent Research Fund Denmark (DFF – Grant no. 0162-00011B, 1 January 2021 – 23 December 2025).


A selection of blacklisted domestic workers from the site http://linkcare.cn/explain/explain-show.php?id=30 [accessed 8 August 2021]. 

Contact the CatCh Network

If you want to know more about the CatCh Network please contact Jesper Willaing Zeuthen

Jesper Willaing Zeuthen

Email: zeuthen@dps.aau.dk
Tel.: +45 9940 9202

More about the CatCh Network
Department of Politics and Society • Fibigerstræde 1 og 3, 9220 Aalborg East • Frederikskaj 10B, 2450 Copenhagen SV
Phone.: +45 9940 8310 • Email: inst.dps@dps.aau.dk
VAT no.: 29102384 • EAN no.: 5798000420656 • P numbers: Aalborg: 1003888237, Copenhagen: 1018019139