Organized Panel Session
The National Civilized City (Quanguo wenming chengshi), a policy program of the Central Guidance Committee for Building Spiritual Civilization under the Chinese Communist Party’s Department of Publicity, is becoming extended globally through “new mobilities” – the emergence of traveling societies. Based on research in progress on the National Civilized City’s “assessment system” and “operation manuals,” for governments of cities, urban districts, and towns in China, this paper shows how the program incorporates measures that now extend transnationally via mobile citizens. The addition of “civilized tourism” to the program’s mandate, in 2015, introduces measures for citizen travel abroad including the Hong Kong and Macau SARs. In emphasizing both benchmark urban standards and human accountability, the program compels cities to strive to improve their urban landscapes as well as citizen activity abroad. As an evolving knowledge formation, the thought work of the National Civilized City constitutes an idealized synthesis of material and spiritual achievement. Its operates as a governing technology of both cities and citizens – seeking measures of control over both territorialized and deterritorialized contexts – thus suggesting how new mobilities continue to be linked to and grounded in China. The analysis gives particular attention to Hong Kong where intensification of travel from mainland China has raised a suite of issues about travel and territory.