| David Bandurski

Rice terraces in China’s Yunnan province. Image by Gao Jialiang available at Wikimedia Commons under CC license.

Introduced in November 2012 at the 18th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party, “Five-in-one” is a catchphrase that defines five key development priorities for “comprehensive promotion” in China, namely: economic, political, cultural, societal and ecological.

In his political report to the 18th National Congress of the CCP in November 2012, which bore the strong imprint of Xi Jinping’s political priorities, Hu Jintao said that the overall task of the Party was to achieve socialist modernization and the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. Achieving this task, he said, would necessitate a “five-in-one” approach to development that would include “economic construction” (经济建设), “political construction” (政治建设), “cultural construction” (文化建设), “social construction” (社会建设) and “the construction of ecological civilization” (生态文明建设). The last of these five terms referred to the goal of environmental sustainability.

Such a “five-in-one” approach to development, said Hu, was conducive to “the achievement of people-centered (以人为本), comprehensively coordinated and sustainable scientific development.” The reference to “scientific development” (科学发展), reminiscent of Hu’s banner term, the “Scientific View of Development” (科学发展观), essentially pointed to the need for sustainable development, as opposed to China’s previous mode of breakneck development from the 1990s to the early 2000s that prioritized GDP growth without consideration of environmental and other costs.

In the Xi Jinping era, “five-in-one” has continued as a component of the overall vision of the remaking under Xi of so-called “socialism with Chinese characteristics,” and is included in the “Ten Definites,” a political catchphrase that encompasses a range of key points of Chinese Communist Party (CCP) doctrine and governance priorities.

David Bandurski

CMP Director

The CMP Dictionary