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Economic Returns to Communist Party Membership: Evidence From Urban Chinese Twins

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  • Hongbin Li
  • PakWai Liu
  • Junsen Zhang
  • Ning Ma

Abstract

This article estimates the returns to membership of the Chinese Communist Party using unique twins data we collected from China. Our OLS estimate shows a Party premium of 10%, but the within-twin-pair estimate becomes zero. One interpretation is that the OLS premium is due to omitted ability and family background. This interpretation suggests that Party members fare well not because of their political status but because of the superior ability that made them Party members. The estimates are also consistent with another interpretation that Party membership not only has its own effect but also has an external effect on siblings. Copyright 2007 The Author(s). Journal compilation Royal Economic Society 2007.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Royal Economic Society in its journal The Economic Journal.

Volume (Year): 117 (2007)
Issue (Month): 523 (October)
Pages: 1504-1520

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Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:117:y:2007:i:523:p:1504-1520

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  3. Simon Johnson & Todd Mitton, 2001. "Cronyism and Capital Controls: Evidence from Malaysia," NBER Working Papers 8521, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  5. Li, Hongbin & Meng, Lingsheng & Wang, Qian & Zhou, Li-An, 2008. "Political connections, financing and firm performance: Evidence from Chinese private firms," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(2), pages 283-299, October.
  6. Bound, John & Solon, Gary, 1999. "Double trouble: on the value of twins-based estimation of the return to schooling," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 169-182, April.
  7. Hongbin Li & Lingsheng Meng & Junsen Zhang, 2006. "Why Do Entrepreneurs Enter Politics? Evidence from China," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 44(3), pages 559-578, July.
  8. Neumark, David, 1999. "Biases in twin estimates of the return to schooling," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 143-148, April.
  9. Raymond Fisman, 2001. "Estimating the Value of Political Connections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 1095-1102, September.
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  13. Hongbin Li & Lingsheng Meng & Junsen Zhang, 2005. "Why Do Entrepreneurs Enter Politics?," Discussion Papers 00009, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Department of Economics.
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Cited by:
  1. Mark Rosenzweig & Junsen Zhang, 2014. "Co-residence, Life-Cycle Savings and Inter-generational Support in Urban China," NBER Working Papers 20057, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Guggiola Gabriele, 2009. "A Political Economy Perspective of the Chinese Government Tactical Behavior," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 200908, University of Turin.
  3. Appleton, Simon & Knight, John & Song, Lina & Xia, Qingjie, 2008. "The Economics of Communist Party Membership: The Curious Case of Rising Numbers and Wage Premium during China’s Transition," IZA Discussion Papers 3454, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Zhang, Jian & Giles, John T. & Rozelle, Scott, 2012. "Does It Pay to Be a Cadre? Estimating the Returns to Being a Local Official in Rural China," IZA Discussion Papers 6653, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Li, Hongbin & Meng, Lingsheng & Shi, Xinzheng & Wu, Binzhen, 2012. "Does having a cadre parent pay? Evidence from the first job offers of Chinese college graduates," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(2), pages 513-520.
  6. Ming Lu & Jianzhi Zhao, 2009. "The Contribution of Social Networks to Income Inequality in Rural China: A Regression-Based Decomposition and Cross-Regional Comparison," Global COE Hi-Stat Discussion Paper Series gd08-019, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
  7. Xin Meng, 2007. "Wealth Accumulation and Distribution in Urban China," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 55, pages 761-791.
  8. He, Xiaobo, 2013. "Wages and Access to International Markets: Evidence from Urban China," MPRA Paper 44537, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  9. Heywood, John S. & Siebert, W. Stanley & Wei, Xiangdong, 2009. "Job Satisfaction and the Labor Market Institutions in Urban China," IZA Discussion Papers 4254, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. Hongbin Li & Mark Rosenzweig & Junsen Zhang, 2008. "Altruism, Favoritism, and Guilt in the Allocuation of Family Resources: Sophie's Choice in Mao's Mass Send Down Movement," Working Papers 965, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
  11. Yao, Yang, 2014. "The Chinese Growth Miracle," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 7, pages 943-1031 Elsevier.
  12. Suchuan Zhang, 2014. "Impact of Job Involvement on Organizational Citizenship Behaviors in China," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 120(2), pages 165-174, March.

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