Catholic University law professor Karla W. Simon (at podium) was a featured speaker at the "International Symposium on Outsourcing Government-Financed Social Services to Civil Society Organizations," held on Dec. 10 and 11 in Shanghai, China.
The discussion was sponsored by the More Love Foundation, Shanghai Jiaotong University, and Tsinghua University.
Simon and her fellow panelists explored the expanding role of civil society organizations in China as providers of social services that have traditionally been the provenance of government.
The United States has a long history of government-private sector partnerships that deliver needed social services to citizens. But the concept has been little-tested in China.
Simon was among 15 international scholars and experts who led discussion of successful examples of government pairings with civil society organizations, and how approaches that have worked elsewhere might be adapted to Chinese society.
The two-day seminar focused on issues with a strong practical significance, including the experience of local government in delivering public services, and the difficulties, challenges, and opportunities that will come with teaming with civil society organizations in the future.
More than 80 guests attended the symposium, which included 16 presentations and 23 commentaries from respondents.