China has reshuffled the party and administrative leaderships of a dozen-odd provinces and directly-administered cities in the wake of the 18th Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Congress. The traits and political orientations of the new regional chiefs reflect the authorities' priorities about seeking gradual change while guaranteeing stability. At the same time, ample opportunities have been afforded to a handful of sixth-generation leaders - a reference to rising stars born in the 1960s - to build up their national stature and reformist credentials.
Beijing's preference for continuity is reflected in the fact that leadership changes in several provinces and major cities simply have involved internal promotions. For example, the just-named party secretaries of Shanghai, Jilin, Shaanxi and Zhejiang, respectively, Han Zheng, Wang Rulin, Zhao Zhengyong and Xia