Date of Award

Spring 2013

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


International Studies

First Advisor

Xiangming Chen


China has overcome some of the most difficult obstacles throughout the centuries, ranging from the Opium War of 1839, to finally being accepted into the World Trade Organization. Despite these difficulties in its past, China has managed to become the world’s largest auto manufacturing country in under four decades, and exceeded other countries that have been producing for over a century. China’s overall economy has benefited from the automobile industry in terms of raising its GDP and creating employment, but it has also caused other changes as well. Cars have become the center of attention, and many metropolitan cities have begun to revolve around the production of cars, making substantial changes in infrastructure and lifestyles to compensate for this relatively new luxury good. Using Shanghai, China’s largest city, I will show just how large of an impact automobiles have made on this city over a multitude of different aspects. This thesis will give a macro overview of the auto industry in China, look specifically at Shanghai’s as a production city, and move on the impact of rapid car growth and its results.


Senior thesis completed at Trinity College for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in International Studies.