A Study on the Impact of Culture, Economic, History and Legal Systems Which Affect the Provisions of Fittings by Residential Developers in Boston, Hong Kong and Nanjing

Article excerpt


It is common to find a whole block of buildings with standardized fittings provided by the developers in Hong Kong and China. The term "One country Two Systems" is one of the best descriptions in the provisions of internal fittings. 80% of residential developers in Nanjing provide empty flats with nothing more than the basic fittings such as windows, doors, ironmongery. There are NO wall paintings, floor tiles, sanitary fittings, kitchen wares. All the buyers received are empty flats with nothing else. Yet, builders in Hong Kong not only provide all the basic fittings, such as wall and floor tiles, they also provide kitchen and bathroom TV. Some even provide red wine cabinet in the kitchen and heating element in the floor tiles. Superb fittings become one of the selling point of the builders. How about US? What is the typical arrangement? In Boston, apart from the standardized housings, it is not unusual to find the builders' advertisement like this "Unique and open floor plan with high quality materials. Will tailor to your needs. Developer will work with you fully throughout the construction process to your satisfaction." (Toll Brothers, 2008)

A lot of the builders have mentioned that they can build a tailored home, such as Altier Homes, Windswept Custom Homes, Designer Built Homes etc. Why there is such a large difference? From the empty standardized flats in China to well-equipped standardized flats in Hong Kong; from well-equipped standardized flats in Hong Kong, to well equipped flats in US. What is the implication behind? It gives us a hint that there must be some differences which make some of those developers decline to make contract with those suppliers. How do culture, legal system and economic prosperity institutions affect the choice in fittings' provisions?

No study has been done on this area and the author aims to fill the gap by putting the lens on the four aforementioned characteristics in the three countries based on a combination of systems theory and neo institutional economic theory. This paper begins with a brief description on history of the three chosen cities, follows by a literature review on the three places' culture, economics and legal system.

Background of Nanjing, Hong Kong and Boston

Among so many cities in US and China, three cities have been chosen: Nanjing, Boston and Hong Kong. The three places are selected because of their special culture and historical background.


Nanjing was once the capital of 6 dynasties in China, she has become an important Chinese cities during its first 1000 years of Chinese history because of its geographical location along the Yangzi River. In 3 A.D., it was designated for the first time as a capital. Famous Song lyricist Xin Qiji once exclaimed "I have come to mourn over the ancients.... the rises and falls of kingdoms fill my vision." The earliest Chinese historical accounts refer to the site in 496 B.C as Yecheng which was established at by Fuchai, King of Wu and later become Yuecheng after power struggle between Wu and Yue. During medieval times, Nanjing served as the first of many capitals, she was termed as Jianye then. Literally, it means "establishing the Enterprise of founding a dynasty" in 3 A.D. She was also officially assigned to be the capital of Tang Dynasty as Jiangkang. The Southern Tang kingdom, the powerless last emperor Li Yu, termed Nanjing Jiangningfu "The Administrative District of Jiangning," and made its capital there. Yuanzhang, who was the first emperor of Ming Dynasty, overthrew the Yuan Dynasty and made her as the capital again in 1368 as Yingtianfu (Honey, 1995) from 937 to 975. Taiping Kingdom renamed it as Tianjing as capital in the mid 19th century. Dr Sun Yat Sen also chose Nanjing as the capital after the Xinhai Revolution (Wikipedia, 2008). Although there are 374 Country-level cities, 15 sub-provincial cities and 283 Prefecture-level cities, Nanjing was chosen for this study because of her special historical background. …


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