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Self-Employment With Chinese Characteristics: The Forgotten Engine Of Rural China'S Growth

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  • JIAN ZHANG
  • LINXIU ZHANG
  • SCOTT ROZELLE
  • STEVE BOUCHER

Abstract

This article sketches a picture of the self-employment sector in rural China and examines the nature of its emergence. Using a randomly selected, nationally representative household-level data set that contains detailed information on household self-employment activities, this article provides evidence that although the self-employed enterprises are small, they have grown fast, operate as relatively complex businesses, and perform well in a financially healthy way. These results, taken together with the pattern of the emergence of self-employed enterprises across China's regions, reveal that the expansion of self-employment is not symptomatic of a failing economy; instead it is a component of the dynamic development process that characterizes rural China during its reform period. "("JEL "J23, D21, O12)" Copyright 2006 Western Economic Association International.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Western Economic Association International in its journal Contemporary Economic Policy.

Volume (Year): 24 (2006)
Issue (Month): 3 (07)
Pages: 446-458

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Handle: RePEc:bla:coecpo:v:24:y:2006:i:3:p:446-458

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Cited by:
  1. Jia, Xiangping & Xiang, Cheng & Huang, Jikun, 2013. "Microfinance, self-employment, and entrepreneurs in less developed areas of rural China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 27(C), pages 94-103.
  2. Yueh, Linda, 2009. "China's Entrepreneurs," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(4), pages 778-786, April.
  3. Sylvie Démurger & Hui Xu, 2011. "Return migrants : The rise of new entrepreneurs in rural China," Post-Print halshs-00627732, HAL.
  4. Alan de Brauw & Scott Rozelle, 2006. "Reconciling the Returns to Education in Off-FarmWage Employment in Rural China," Department of Economics Working Papers 2006-03, Department of Economics, Williams College.
  5. Giulietti, Corrado & Wahba, Jackline & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2013. "Entrepreneurship of the Left-Behind," IZA Discussion Papers 7270, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. YUEH, Linda, 2009. "Self-employment in urban China: Networking in a transition economy," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 471-484, September.
  7. Gulumser, A.A. & Baycan Levent, T. & Nijkamp, P. & Poot, H.J., 2012. "The role of local and newcomer entrepreneurs in rural development: A comparative meta-analytic study," Serie Research Memoranda 0001, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics, Business Administration and Econometrics.
  8. Frijters, Paul & Kong, Tao & Meng, Xin, 2011. "Migrant Entrepreneurs and Credit Constraints under Labour Market Discrimination," IZA Discussion Papers 5967, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Feinian Chen & Kim Korinek, 2010. "Family life course transitions and rural Household economy during China’s market reform," Demography, Springer, vol. 47(4), pages 963-987, November.
  10. Zuwarimwe, J. & Kirsten, Johann F., 2010. "The role of social networks in development of small-scale enterprises in the Chimanimani district of Zimbabwe," Agrekon, Agricultural Economics Association of South Africa (AEASA), vol. 49(1), March.

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