This is a complement to Anne Haila's critique of institutionalism in Chinese urbanism. This is understood as an extension of Ronald Coase's transaction cost economics in urban space. The focus is well-defined property rights which, extended to both urban land and intellectual property, allow monopoly competition and internalise public goods - whether social or environmental - into the logic of the neoliberal commoditized transaction. This ('Washington-Consensus') notion of rights is contrasted to the blurred ('Beijing-Consensus') property rights arrangements of today's China. Here property is a 'bundle of rights', in which different legal persons have rights in the same unit of urban space. In this property is not well defined but instead a 'boundary object'. I draw on Francois Jullien to describe such "relational" property, which is coloured, less by individualism, than by Taoist-like relations. These comprise a long-time horizon, an ongoing never completed, never actualized character of transacting or exchange. They comprise rights-sharing, obligation-sharing and risk-sharing. Parallels are drawn with, not Roman and Continental a priorist, but with English a posteriorist notions of property. Copyright (c) 2009 The Author. Journal Compilation (c) 2009 Joint Editors and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
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