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Has Third-Party Monitoring Improved Water Pollution Data Quality? Evidence from National Surface Water Assessment Sections in China

School of Economics, Zhejiang Gongshang University, Hangzhou 310018, China
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Academic Editor: Luis Garrote
Water 2021, 13(20), 2917; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13202917
Received: 9 August 2021 / Revised: 28 September 2021 / Accepted: 15 October 2021 / Published: 17 October 2021
(This article belongs to the Section Water Resources Management, Policy and Governance)
In China, the central government assesses local governments based on data monitored and reported by local agencies, and the accuracy of local statistics has been controversial. In order to further guarantee the authenticity and reliability of surface water monitoring data, the central government will gradually withdraw the local monitoring powers of the national surface water assessment section and implement third-party monitoring to achieve “national assessment and national monitoring.” This paper is based on the time-point water data of important national water quality automatic monitoring stations from 2015 to 2020, using the McCrary (2008) density test to infer possible data manipulation phenomena, and analyze whether third-party monitoring has improved the accuracy of China’s environmental data. The results of the study show that between 2015 and 2020, the observed 81 monitoring sites had varying degrees of data discontinuity. The discontinuity of the data after third-party monitoring was reduced in dissolved oxygen (DO) measurement, an important indicator in the assessment, implying that third-party monitoring has improved the quality of water environment data and the accuracy of the data. The research in this article provides a reference for third-party participation in environmental governance and proves that the participation of these organizations can reduce data manipulation behaviors of local governments and ensure the effectiveness of environmental data. View Full-Text
Keywords: surface water quality monitoring; third-party monitoring; water environment management; incentive compatibility; data manipulation surface water quality monitoring; third-party monitoring; water environment management; incentive compatibility; data manipulation
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MDPI and ACS Style

Zhao, L.; Hong, M.; Wang, X. Has Third-Party Monitoring Improved Water Pollution Data Quality? Evidence from National Surface Water Assessment Sections in China. Water 2021, 13, 2917. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13202917

AMA Style

Zhao L, Hong M, Wang X. Has Third-Party Monitoring Improved Water Pollution Data Quality? Evidence from National Surface Water Assessment Sections in China. Water. 2021; 13(20):2917. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13202917

Chicago/Turabian Style

Zhao, Liange, Mengyao Hong, and Xueyuan Wang. 2021. "Has Third-Party Monitoring Improved Water Pollution Data Quality? Evidence from National Surface Water Assessment Sections in China" Water 13, no. 20: 2917. https://doi.org/10.3390/w13202917

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