Assessing the Impact of China’s Slowing Economy on CCP Legitimacy using Hyperlocal Population Data

March 2024 No Comments

Speaker: Katherine Ly (Fraym)

Date: 21 March 2024

Speaker Session Summary

The Chinese economy has enjoyed massive growth during the last few decades as its economy transitioned from mostly agrarian to the world’s largest trading nation and an industrial superpower. This trend of Chinese economic growth has drastically slowed or reversed in several key areas. Ms. Ly demonstrated how Fraym data can show how several metrics, such as faith in the economy and political leaders, changed from 2023 to 2024 because of this economic slowdown. The data is available at several levels of analysis, such as the national and city level. She emphasized that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has maintained unquestioned loyalty from most Chinese civilians because of past economic success. However, growing CCP concern over maintaining ruling legitimacy can be seen in new and aggressive economic goals that have been put in place for the end of 2024. 

Using Fraym data, Ms. Ly, showed the audience what Chinese citizens are most concerned with. These concerns include a persisting property crisis, worker burn out from working 12-hour shifts for 6 days a week, and youth unemployment. Chinese citizens are also blaming the CCP for the economic effects of China’s “one child” policy that is contributing to a diminishing and burnt-out workforce. Several examples of how Chinese sentiment toward the CCP at the local level were mentioned. One such case study was the economic slowdown in Zhengzhou, which was severely affected by the stagnating real estate market. Ms. Ly concluded the presentation by posing several questions that will go towards deciding how the CCP is perceived by its civilians in the near future including: if the Chinese economy can achieve 5% growth, if local leaders can bring jobs to their constituents, and if international and regional conflicts affect the public perception of the CCP within China. 

Speaker Session Recording

Briefing Materials

Report: Rising Economic Concerns in China (

Biography: Katherine Ly is a Solutions Engineer at Fraym, focused on assisting Defense and USG clients by bridging gaps using Fraym’s unique hyperlocal human population data. She leverages her background in Military Intelligence, Psychological Operations, and Information Operations (Operations in the Information Environment) to create solutions to impact narratives, shape perceptions, understand the operating environment, drive assessments, and ultimately influence real-world behavior at the micro-level. She has a Masters in Information Technology & Management from the University of Texas at Dallas with a concentration in cybersecurity.


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