Public performance-accountability nexus is a hot topic in recent research, but we know little about its antecedents and consequences in developing countries and transition economies. Are top-down appointed political elites taken accountable for public service performance in authoritarian nations like China? The question is theoretically and empirically examined in the book. I argue that government cadres are appropriately appraised and promoted even with the lame democracy. Using a novel dataset and event history analysis method, I test the performance-based political promotion tournament theory and its contingent features. I find that career advancement of provincial leading officials is positively influenced by public service performance but not by economic performance. The effect is stronger for Party secretaries than governors, for central connected officials than local officials, for younger than older, and for short tenure in office than long serving. The performance-promotion nexus in relatively weak and contingent on contextual attributes, suggesting performance-based reform should be deepened to make local agents accountable for public service delivery and responsiveness.