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Migration and rural poverty in China

Publication Abstract

Du, Y., Albert F. Park, and S.G. Wang. 2005. "Migration and rural poverty in China." Journal of Comparative Economics, 33(4): 688-709.

We analyze two complementary household datasets from China's poor areas to examine whether the poor migrate and whether migration helps the poor. We find an inverted-U-shaped relationship between household endowments and the likelihood of migration. Over time, the poor are more likely to migrate. Using household panel data and taking prior village migration networks as an instrument, we find that having a migrant increases a household's income per capita by 8.5 to 13.1 percent, but that the overall impact on poverty is modest because most poor people do not migrate. Migrants remit a large share of their income and the amount of these remittances is responsive somewhat to the needs of other family members. Journal of Comparative Economics 33 (4) (2005) 688-709. Institute of Population and Labor Economics, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Beijing 100732, China; University of Michigan, 611 Tappan Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA; Institute of Agricultural Economics, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing 100081, China. (c) 2005 Association for Comparative Economic Studies. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

DOI:10.1016/j.jce.2005.09.001 (Full Text)

Country of focus: China.

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