Yang Shengming, male and from the Han ethnic group, born in July 1937, is a native of Jin County, Shandong Province and a member of the Communist Party of China. In 1961, he graduated from the department of economics of Nanjing University. In July 1966, he graduated with a master in the overall equilibrium of the national economy major of the Institute of Economics in the Philosophy and Social Sciences department of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. He is currently a researcher and PhD student advisor in the Institute of Finance and Trade Economics of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, President of the China Institute of Economic Regulations, and Vice-President of China’s Institute of Cost Study. He used to be Vice-President of the Graduate School of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Director of the Institute of Economics in the Philosophy and Social Sciences department of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chief Editor of Finance and Trade Economics, and a member of the leading group of the State Council Housing Reform. His academic expertise is in Macro-Economics, International Trade Theory and Consumption Economics Theory. He has won the Sun Yefang Prize in Economic Science five times and the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences Excellent Scientific Achievements Prize four times. Since 1992, he has started to enjoy a special allowance awarded by the State Council. In 1994, he won the “Young and Mid-aged Expert with Outstanding Contribution” Award.
Stick to the Truth, Work Hard through Innovation
Xia Xianliang (hereinafter referred to as Xia): thank you for your accepting of interview! You are a predecessor in economic circle since the establishment of new China. And you have devoted yourself to teaching and scientific research in economic circle for more than 50 years, and you have made outstanding contribution to the development of Chinese economic. In addition, you have won the State Council’s Special Government Allowance issued from 1992 and the title for Young and Middle-aged Expert with Outstanding Contributions conferred by the Ministry of Personnel in 1994, and some of your works have ever won prizes. What fields the most outstanding academic contributions are concentrated upon?
Yang Shengming (hereinafter referred to as Yang): my academic achievements are mainly concentrated upon four issues, namely in four subjects: firstly, labor theory of value; secondly, consumption economy theory; thirdly, market economy and price theory; fourthly, foreign trade and economic theory.
Xia: Marxist labor theory of value is the foot stone of Marxian Economics, which is discussed fiercely in academic circles at home and abroad. You have cared about and participated in the discussion of labor theory of value in academic circles. What unique viewpoints and contributions do you have in the aspect of Marxist labor theory of value?
Yang: I have had many research achievements in the aspect of Marxist labor theory of value in recent years.
The first achievement is that I have awarded 2001 Special Award for Excellent Information of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. This special award is rarely conferred in our Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. And the title of that article is How to Deepen and Develop Marxist Labor Theory of Value, which was published in Special Information Newspaper 2001. Why did I gain special award because of this article? Because Special Information Newspaper published that article for continuous three terms, and this article was reported to the Party Central Committee. The reason why this article can gain praises is that it fights back the value theory of production factors at that time. Address for the Celebration of the 80th Anniversary of the Establishment of Chinese Communist Party of Jiang Zemin required deepening the cognition of labor theory of value through the combination of new practices. At that time, someone put forward that labor theory of value was one-sided and outdated, and others used the value theory of production factors to replace labor theory of value. Aiming at these conditions, I wrote the above article.
There are three contributions in this article. Firstly, summarize basic contents of Marxist labor theory of value as ten aspects for the first time. Completely summarize Marxist labor theory of value for the first time at home and abroad. What is the essence of Marxist labor theory of value isn’t answered specially, while it is scattered in his vast books. Of course, it is mainly concentrated in Chapter 1 of Capital, but not limited to his chapter. Therefore, I put them together and summarize as contents of ten aspects. These ten aspects must be stuck to, without any shake, or Fundamental Principles of Marxism will be obeyed.
Secondly, put forward developing Marxist labor theory of value from three fields; at present, what aspects shall Marxist labor theory of value develop from? I summarized as three aspects. These three aspects are as follows: values created by service labor, values created by scientific and technical labor, and values created by managing labor. (1) The present era is a service economy era. At that time, Marx mostly started from material products to discuss commodity value and said rarely about commodities of service form. Therefore, we must develop values created by service labor. (2) The present era is also a scientific technology era. We shall strengthen the research on values created by scientific and technical labor, which is the requirement of scientific technology era. (3) Values created by managing labor shall be developed further. In Marx era, the management of macro-economy is rare, but now the level of socialization is comparatively high, not only socialization but also globalization. Not only micro enterprises management can create values, but also national macro economic management creates values. Enterprise management creates values certainly, which is also said by Marx. Except national administrative management, such as armies and public security organs, don’t create values, direct or indirect economic management of government organs, such as National Development and Reform Commission and the Commerce Department etc., create values, like enterprise management creating values. On the basis of ten labor value contents of Marx, we shall develop service values, scientific and technical values, and managing values further.
Thirdly, be sharply demarcated from western value theories. Four demarcation lines are put forward in the article, and some rights and wrongs are cleared. The first demarcation line is being sharply demarcated from value theories of production factors of Zaire. Value theories of production factors of Zaire are totally different from our labor theory of value. Marx has criticized value theories of production factors of Zaire. I have written an article recently, which was published in Marxism Research 2007, and in this article I fought back value theories of production factors of Zaire. The second demarcation line is being sharply demarcated from Marshall Value theory of supply and demand. He thinks that values are determined by supply and demand, which is not labor theory of value. The third demarcation line is being sharply demarcated from utility theory of value of Bawerk. The fourth demarcation line is being sharply demarcated from the value theory of non-labor products. Products mentioned by us usually are labor products, but some non-labor products are benefit for us, such as air, uncultivated land, and sea etc., their values are not created by labor. And shares in stock markets are not created by labor.
This article is divided into three parts, and Marxist labor theory of value is summarized as ten aspects, and we shall develop Marxist labor theory of value in three circles and four demarcation lines shall be sharply demarcated from non- Marxist labor theory of value, and Marxist labor theory of value is summarized completely. That’s why Chinese Academy of Social Sciences conferred “Special Award” to me.
Besides this article, I have also written several influential articles.
The second achievement is Economic Globalization and International Value Issue published in the 6th issue of 2002 of Graduate Journal of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. Formation bases of exchange price of international commodities in economic globalization can be found in this article. There are two viewpoints in this article.
Firstly, there are three development stages during the form of price: (1) at the initial stage of development of simple commodity economy and capitalistic commodity economy, price is based on value. And value is the first base for the formation of price. (2) At the stage of capitalistic free competition, the base of price is production price, rather than value. Till the later stage of capitalistic free competition, after advanced large-scale socialized production was developed, average profit was formed because of fierce competition, and value transferred to production price. And production price is the second base for the formation of price. (3) The third stage is international value. In present times, global average profit shall be formed gradually through economic globalization and the free flow of production factors. In this era, international value or international production price is the third base for the formation of price. At present, China has finished the first stage, and China is in the transition period from the second stage to the third stage. And the competition faced by us is global competition. In addition, international value is the base for the formation of price. Average profit is formed under the condition of globalization, and international price is based on international value.
Secondly, the theoretical basis of win-win strategy advocated at present isn’t the absolute advantage theory of Adam Smith or the comparative advantage theory of David Ricardo, but Marx international theory. International value or international production price is the theoretical basis of win-win strategy. I wrote a thesis named Marx International Value Theory and Realistic Significance with more than 20 thousand words, and the abstract was published in Marxism Research, specially discussing that international value is the theoretical basis of win-win strategy. The most complete three parts of this thesis were published in Academic Council Colloquium of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in 2007.
Xia: Marxist labor theory of value suffers rigorous challenging in various academic ideological trends at present. How to treat challenges faced by labor theory of value?
Yang: Labor theory of value is the basic theory of Marxism. If the labor theory of value is overthrown, the whole Marxism theory will be overturned. Marxist labor theory of value is materialism in the field of economy. Therefore, in Chapter 1 of Edition 1 of Scroll 1 of Marx Capital, labor theory of value is discussed. However, at present it faces rigorous challenge. Of course, it has been opposed in western world all the time, because capital and labor are opposite. As for whether value is produced by labor or capital, different people have different answers. People with capital absolutely oppose labor theory of value, so there are opposite voices in western world, which is not strange. There were not opposite voices in China in the past, because: firstly, public opinion was closed strictly; secondly, all of us were poor and didn’t have capital, so there were not opposite voices. Now there are capitals, the antagonism of labor and capital appears, and people speaking for capital emerge. That value is crated by capital puts forward the most rigorous challenges for labor theory of value, namely the value theory of production factors, which is also the most dangerous, because it is obvious that this theory replace the profit of capitalists, namely value is created by capital. At present, some people speak politely that value is created by labor and capital jointly. I think that it is easy to refute the value theory of supply and demand and utility theory of value, and their contrariety isn’t intense enough; it is difficult to refute the value theory of production factors, and there are a group of people speak for capital. At present, there are people speaking for utility and more people speaking for capacity. I have written an article published in Marxism Research, named A Brief Comment on Some False Words Imposed to Marxist Labor Theory of Value. This article is refined and profound, fighting back viewpoints of Yan Zhijie of Peking University in New Exploration of Labor Theory of Value (Peking University Press). He opposed frankly labor theory of value, and he is an outstanding representative who makes use of the value theory of production factors to oppose labor theory of value.
Xia: you have paid close attention to the research of Chinese consumption economy issues all the time. And you have awarded Sun Zhifang Economic and Scientific Award for many times. What main viewpoints have you put forward in the aspect of consumption economy theories?
Yang: in the aspect of consumption economy, two books and two theses have awarded prizes, and I have awarded Sun Zhifang Economic and Scientific Award for three times. Nature, Formation, Trend, and Interior Proportional Relation of Consumption Fund and Overall Vision on Deepening Institutional Reform of Urban Housing awarded respectively 1984 and 1988 Sun Zhifang Economic and Scientific Thesis Award; the book of Consumption Strategy of Chinese Market in 90s awarded 1994 Sun Zhifang Economic and Scientific Work Award. Selection of Chinese Consumption Model awarded the First Excellent Scientific Research Achievement Award (1977-1991) of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, and this was the first award after the establishment of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. In the aspect of consumption economy, the following basic viewpoints have been put forward:
Firstly, put forward objective standards for moderate consumption. In Brief Discussion on Moderate Consumption, concept and standards of moderate consumption are put forward. Actually, objective standards for moderate consumption are talked aiming at John Maynard Keynes, and different opinions are raised towards the relationship among income, saving, and consumption in the book of The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money. John Maynard Keynes thinks: “under the condition that the income increase is certain, saving tends to increase, and consumption tends to decrease”, what I don’t think is right. American practices thoroughly denied his theory, and phenomena that saving tends to increase and consumption tends to decrease didn’t appear. As a matter of fact, savings of American residents are rarely zero, but the consumption of American still raise. Why he thinks that saving tends to increase, and consumption tends to decrease? American practices were just on the contrary of John Maynard Keynes theory. I think that saving, income, and consumption increase in the same pace on the whole, and the ratio of them is a constant, which shall not change from long-term inspection, rather than increasing or decreasing. This article was written in initial stage of reform and opening-up, so I didn’t mention the name of John Maynard Keynes.
As a matter of fact, General Theory of John Maynard Keynes can not be called as “general theory”, but be called as “individual theory”. There are three conditions between demand and supply, but he only says the first condition, namely insufficient demand. Marshall talks out the second condition, namely the mutual production of supply and demand. The third condition is that excessive demand, for example, excessive investment demands with Chinese characteristics, with insufficient consumption demand. In General Theory, John Maynard Keynes declares opposing the individual theory of Marshall and that he has researched out general theory, but I want to say that his theory is also “individual theory.”
Secondly, put forward consumption system and reform. In Discussion on Chinese Consumption System Reform, I bring the consumption field into the range of system reform for the first time, and some issues about consumption system reform are discussed in this article. The present system reform only indicates production, circulation, and distribution, not including consumption. The consumption system reform has not been valued till now. I think that consumption system reform shall be put forward.
Thirdly, put forward three kinds of consumption levels with different meanings. The consumption level of the first meaning indicates fund for individual consumption dividing population; the consumption level of the second meaning indicates fund for individual consumption pulsing consumption fund of social collectivity (government expenditure in culture, education, medical treatment, and physical training etc.) and then dividing population; the consumption level of the third meaning indicates fund for individual consumption pulsing consumption fund of social collectivity and non-productive investment or accumulation and then dividing population. Non-productive investment means investment in capital constructions beyond production field, such as building libraries and museums and investment in residential housings etc. There shall be three kinds of standards for consumption level, not limited by the first kind, and then the living standards of people can be measured accurately. I think that State Statistics Bureau shall accept the second and third consumption level, and numbers calculated through these methods also shall be announced.
Fourthly, consumption structure is divided into macro consumption structure and micro consumption structure. In Research on Chinese Consumption Structure published in 1986, I divided consumption structure into macro consumption structure and micro consumption structure for the first time.
Fifthly, emphasize handling the relationship between equity and efficiency earlier. In Distribution Problem on Chinese Consumption Fund and Personal Income, I put forward the principle for correctly handling the relationship between equity and efficiency in 1984, which is applicable now. In this article, I also clearly introduced Gini coefficient and Lorentz curve. Some principles in the aspect of equity and efficiency put forward at present are the same as viewpoints of me twenty years ago.
Xia: what direction you think shall consumption economy research develop to?
Yang: at present, consumption economics focus more on macro, but macro problems haven’t solved yet. Now, our investment ratio is high, and the ratio of consumption in GDP is very low. Everyone researches, but problems become more and more serious at present, and this problem hasn’t been solved. These macro consumption researches are synthetic and general research, which are null and not deepened.
Micro consumption research is lack, and consumption survey research for residents is not done. In the last year, I suggested Xiangtan University taking the lead to develop household consumption survey research. Don’t do things just in books. We shall go to towns and countries, for example, surveying ten households of famers and twenty households of workers, and research issues in accordance with actual materials. The investigation and survey of universities and research institutions shall fix points, for example, three to five points, and they shall gather materials in time and accumulate data every year. There was this kind of investigation and survey in Nankai University in the past, so was foreign countries. Researches of us are synthetic at present, and all data are provided by State Statistics Bureau, and problems are common. As for consumption economy research, micro household survey shall be developed, including various people, such as famers, workers, capitalists, senior intellectuals, students, and the old etc., and consumption research shall develop to the micro direction.
Xia: since the implementation of reform and opening-up, market economy and price theory have been hot points discussed in economic circle all the time, and you have been in this vigorous discussion. What outstanding viewpoints do you have on researching market economy and price theory?
Yang: in the book of Discussion on Market Economy with Chinese Characteristics published in 1996, I summarize in theory that there are eight characteristics for Chinese market economy and advantages and disadvantages of market; deeply analyze and clarify the duality and double effect of market with viewpoints and methods of materialistic dialectics; draw a clear distinction among the market theory of Deng Xiaoping, market harm theory, and market universal theory. These are achievements in the aspect of market economy theory.
In the aspect of price theory, I have two new viewpoints. Theory and Practice of Chinese Price Model Transformation co-written by Zhang Zhuoyuan and me has awarded the first Xue Muqiao Price Research Award. In this book, I put forward the diversity of dual price system. And dual price system has two basic types, namely ratio dual price system and plate dual price system. Ratio dual price system will die away soon in history, but ratio dual price system will not die away completely, and it is not absolute. Plate dual price system shall be stored for a long term, and price is ruled by the government partly and market partly. After price reform, not all are market price. Price of some commodities is ruled by the government, for example, medicines in foreign markets are national unified price, and prices of tap water and railway are ruled by the government. Plate dual price system will exist for a long term. The diversity of dual price system is a new viewpoint put forward by me.
I have also put forward macro price issues. In the past, western economics always spoke price as micro price, and market as micro market rather than macro market. I admit that price is micro at first, and there are macro price issues except micro price issues. For example, general price level, price structure, upstream price, and downstream price are macro issues. In 2007, if general price level of China increased 2% or 3%, the general price level means the general price level all over China. In the aspect of macro price, two articles of me have been published in Price Theory and Practice and Chinese Price Issues.
Xia: what comments do you have towards various arguments in current economic circle?
Yang: I have three viewpoints in the aspect of market economy theory. Firstly, from market uselessness theory even market harm theory to market universal theory. Secondly, as for effects of market itself, from the doctrine affirming two aspects to the doctrine affirming only one aspect, and there are positive effects and negative influences towards markets, with two sides. In Discussion on Market Economy with Chinese Characteristics, the dual character and the doctrine affirming two aspects of markets are discussed in one chapter specially. At present, some people think that market is the doctrine affirming only one aspect, and it only has the favorable side, without harmful side. Thirdly, markets of different social natures are the same, and social natures of markets are ignored or denied. Whether socialism shall be added to the market spoken by us or not? Some people say that it is not necessary to add, because subjects and owners of markets are with social natures. I think that the social nature of markets shall be confirmed, namely preposition of “socialism” or “capitalism” shall be added before markets.
I think that these three points must be cleared and solved, or else we will go to evil ways. I don’t oppose markets. Markets have their own historical conditions, and they are not broken away from social reality. If markets are moved to educational or medical industry, can they do? If markets are moved to compulsory education, they will be in a complete mess. Education and basic medical treatment can not be adjusted only by markets. Markets can not cover the whole society.
Xia: in recent ten years, you have concentrated on the field of foreign economy and trade and published and issued many books and theses. What are the most outstanding achievements do you think?
Yang: Chinese Tariff System Reform is the first theoretical monograph on tariff system reform since reform and opening-up, which won the first prize of An Zijie International Trade Research Award in 1997. Afterwards, this monograph was translated to Japanese, published in Trade and Tariff sponsored by Japanese Tariff Association for continuous ten issues, except tariff ideas of Marx and Engels. It is popular in Japan. This book regards Marxism tariff theory as guidance, comprehensively discussing various aspects of Chinese tariff reform, and systematically stating some issues, such as tariff system, function, policy, tariff rate, tariff preference, bonded system, and tariff collection and management. It summarizes experiences and lessons for nearly twenty years after reform and opening-up, and it is co-written with actual management department of the government, and basic claims for tariff reform in the future are put forward, which are praised by the society.
Xia: the discussion on reform theory is comparatively deep in Chinese economic circle, which provides theoretical support for Chinese economic system reform. And at the same time, China accelerates the pace of reform and opening-up, joins in World Trade Organization, and participates in economic globalization, and theoretical guidance is needed. What are your comments on theoretical research of opening-up?
Yang: I think that the theoretical research on Chinese opening-up lags behind seriously. Practical paces of our opening-up are fast, but our theories lag behind, especially our theoreticians don’t have many achievements in this aspect, and my own achievements in this aspect are few. Reasons are as follows: firstly, there are too much problems in economic globalization. As for globalization, we don’t have enough cognition for problems brought by globalization, and Chinese research achievements are few. Secondly, the international strategy of our Party has changed. I have applied for a topic named “Marx international value theory and win-win strategy”, so as to develop the research on reform and opening-up theory deeply. Our Party has put forward not only win-win strategy, but also building harmonious world. Our Party will build not only harmonious Chinese society but also harmonious world. Thirdly, in the aspect of cultivating talents, we research international trade, international marketing, and international investment, which can not keep pace with practical development, and research achievements are not systematic. In this aspect, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences hasn’t published excellent great books. While in foreign institutions, a group of experts systematically publish several influential theoretical books. In short, opening-up theory extremely needs research, because the strategy of our Party has changed. Our theoreticians don’t make theoretical answers. Theories shall walk in front and put forward new theories. After our Party put forward new strategies, theoretical state of scholars in this aspect are not enough.
Xia: you have ever put forward that the research of foreign economy and trade shall concern “five foreign”. What does this “five foreign” mean?
Yang: I have written an article specially talking “five foreign”. “Five foreign” means foreign trade, foreign capital, foreign debt, foreign exchange, and foreign aid. “Five foreign” restrains mutually and promote mutually, and they are a dialectical unity. In order to deal with the relationship of “five foreign” and enhance the opening-up level, we shall stick to the principle of pertaining to the foreign countries uniformly, regarding foreign trade as the base, and organizing and coordinating actions, which are bases and preconditions for opening-up to reach a higher stage of development.
Xia: at present, China is in a weak position in international service trade. Not long before, the State Council has issued the policy measurement about advocating the development of service industry in China and opening the market within China. How to cultivate the competitiveness and new growth points for Chinese foreign service trade?
Yang: in order to the competitiveness of Foreign Service trade, we must strengthen domestic service industry. Without strong domestic service industry, we will not have strong competitiveness in service trade. American service trade is strong, because its domestic service industry is strong. The ratio of Chinese service industry in GDP is extremely low. During “the 10th five-year plan”, China planed to increase it from 33% to 36%, but actually, the ratio of service industry in GDP didn’t increase but decrease three percentage points. The ratio of Chinese service industry in GDP is not only much lower than developed countries, but also lower than many developing countries.
The ratio of domestic service industry is low, which relates to vanity projects of the government. The growth in industry is rapid, which can be seen by others. The development of service industry may not be seen, so it is not valued by the government.
Chinese service industry falls far behind western developed countries. The government shall value and strengthen service industry. I hope that the service industry in GDP can increase 1% every year, like this, China is expected to achieve the current level of America.
Xia: through the process of reform and opening-up for nearly thirty years, China has gained favorable achievements in the aspect of economy, society, science and technology, and culture. In order to fit for requirements for building harmonious society, what aspects need to be reformed most urgently?
Yang: at present, the government reform is urgent. Government organs of all levels shall be reformed, and personnel quality shall be enhanced, and concepts shall be changed. Public servants of all levels of governments shall realize these words “serve the people” inscribed in the south gate of Central South Ocean. We are not officers of people, but servants of people. Governments of all levels shall serve the people and be servants of people, which is very important for leaders at basic levels. I have ever come to government organs of America, Japan, and France, and I have also come to Japanese Ministry of Economy, Ministry of the Treasury, and Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, they don’t have office buildings as luxurious as that in some government organs of China. Office conditions of some local governments in Japan are obviously not as good as that in China, except computers.
Xia: since China joined World Trade Organization at the end of 2001, the development speed of Chinese foreign trade is rapid; the scale of imported foreign capital every year is very large; the technical content and structure of imported capital are improved; Chinese enterprises gain practice, development, and grandness in international competition; some effective enterprise in China begin to walk out through direct investment, merger, and acquisition. Under current international economic condition, do you think whether the opportunity for Chinese enterprises to walk out is mature or not? What supporting work shall the government do?
Yang: the opportunity for Chinese enterprises to walk out is mature. Enterprises of our country are qualified in talent, capital, and exchange. We need walk out. Lenin has ever said: “commodity export must have capital export”. At present, Chinese foreign trade increases rapidly. Foreign trade is strong, but investment in foreign countries is weak.
American export sales are only equal to one third of oversea sales amount of American multinational corporations. And European export sales are only equal to one fourth of their oversea sales amount. Multinational corporations can gain markets, resources, and technologies through investment in foreign countries. At present, foreign-trade exports of China is about USD one thousand million dollars, while investment in foreign countries is only USD several dozen million, when compared with strong countries in the world, it is extremely little and it extremely need walk out. Trade restrictions of foreign countries can be avoided through walking out.
Chinese consulates and embassies in foreign countries and the representative office in WTO head quarter shall help enterprises understand trade systems, laws, and market situations of various countries in the world. The Commerce Department shall set an organization to assist enterprises to solve problems.
Xia: you not only make contributions to pursuing studies and accumulating rich educational experience, but also are model for our younger generation in personality. Can you talk about your experience in personality, doing things, and pursuing knowledge?
Yang: now let me say four experiences. Firstly, make progress following closely the era. (1) Over half a century, China has developed from the market economy faced in the initial stage for the establishment of new China, transferring to high planned economic system through socialism transformation, and socialist market economy is built through reform and opening-up for nearly thirty years. The change of the historical process from market to plan to market is huge. In the past, planned economy was talked everyday, but at present, market economy is talked everyday. (2) The country develops from poverty to richness and from poverty to moderate prosperity. (3) The world develops from bipolar world to three-polar world, and to globalization at present. This unified world has changed greatly. In this kind of era change, as a scholar, I shall keep pace with the change of this era, which is not easy. However, if we can not keep pace with the change of this era, we can not make contributions.
Countries are developing, and the era is going forward, but our capacity is limited, therefore, if we can make contributions to our country, we will do so. But we can not make a mess. I always do this, namely giving a hand and not making a mess. Some people don’t consider whether words spoken by them are beneficial for their countries or not. As for my words, I am responsible for the country, Party, and people.
Secondly, personality, doing things, and pursuing knowledge are unified. Of course, there is opposite side between personality and pursuing knowledge. Character is not completely equal to knowledge. Some people are good in character and they can also pursuing knowledge well, and there are many people of this kind. Some people are not good in character but their knowledge is ok. However, other people are good in character but their knowledge is not good. You can not pursuing knowledge well, and there may be many reasons, such as insufficient talents, sickness, and family responsibilities etc. Not good in pursuing knowledge doesn’t mean that all of you are not good. I think character and pursuing knowledge shall be unified.
Thirdly, people researching on economics must learn some philosophies. Proceed from the reality. Treating problems shall be dialectical. Not emphasize one point, and deny another point. Philosophies can cultivate people’s abstract methods and logical thinking. Without abstract methods, we can not make any researches. Any subjects shall be abstract, so we must learn some philosophies.
Fourthly, we shall absorb useful things in economics. Some concepts, theories, and methods in western economics are useful, such as macro, GDP, Gini coefficient. We shall not reject western economic theories, and not using western economics to replace Marxism economics. Western economics shall be imported and used. Marxism shall be regarded as the base, while western theories as usage.
Xia: you have ever served as Vice President of Graduate School of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Director of Finance and Trade Institute, and Secretary of the Party Committee. You must accumulate many experiences in managing academy and institute. Can you talk about them?
Yang: I have two experiences. Firstly, combine your own business and administrative work. Before serving as Vice President of Graduate School, Vice President Liu Guoguang called me to seek for opinions and asked whether I would like to be Vice President of Graduate School. He also said: “when you have more administrative work, you business shall not be influenced.” I accepted that work and admitted that I would act in accordance with words of Liu Vice President. After that, I formulated a plan, namely I must publish one article in newspapers every month, and no matter it is long or short, and I must publish a book every year. Looking back on it, I not only made it, but also outperform.
Secondly, combine personal matters and public matters. Do whatever your position requires. Don’t have an eye to the main chance. I prefer make less money to completing public work. As the director, I work hard to pursue welfares for others. This is the work delivered to me by our Party, country, and the masses. Treat and combine personal matters and public matters well.
Xia: you are an example for us youth people in pursuing knowledge, managing institute, personality, and doing things. In pursuing knowledge, your meticulous, dedicated, and unceasing spirit inspires us to go forward; in managing institutes, your spirit of devoting yourself to public interests, selfless service, and constant development has built new image of servant of people; in personality and doing things, your spirit of going forward with heart and soul, being what you appear to be, and unwilling to yield to others is worthy of learning by us all the time. Thank you again!
Xia Xianliang: male, born Hefei of Anhui in 1963. At present, he works in Financial and Trade Economy Research Institute of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Deputy Researcher, and Ph.D. Economics. He has published a book written by him, co-written more than ten books, published more than ten theses, and researched more than ten reports.
(Translated by Xu Jin)
(Translated by Xu Jin)
Editor: Wang Daohang