Self-employment of rural-to-urban migrants in China
AbstractPurpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore the determinants of self-employment among rural to urban migrants in China. Design/methodology/approach – The analysis is based on a sample of migrant household heads from the 2008 Rural-Urban Migration in China and Indonesia (RUMiCI) survey. An estimate of the wage differential between self-employed and employed workers is obtained by means of an endogenous switching model and used to estimate the employment choice. The procedure is extended to account for migration selectivity bias, for alternative statuses before migration, and for different post-migration employment histories. Findings – Self-employed migrants are positively selected with respect to their unobserved characteristics; their wages are substantially higher than what they would have obtained had they chosen paid work. Furthermore, even after accounting for the substantial heterogeneity across cities, industries, occupations, and after correcting for the migration selectivity bias, the wage differential is found to be an important determinant of self-employment. Research limitations/implications – The finding that market imperfections do not constrain the self-employment choice of migrants does not imply that reforms designed to eliminate institutional barriers are undesirable. Policy should target the reduction of gaps between urban residents and migrants (such as the household registration system – hukou), so that migrants can access new business opportunities which are currently a prerogative of urban residents. Originality/value – The paper analyses the determinants of self-employment using a recent survey based on a sample of rural-to-urban migrants in China. The key findings indicate that migrants who choose self-employment are positively selected in terms of their unobservable characteristics. Moreover, the wage differential has a strong positive effect on the probability of choosing self-employment. In the transition to a market economy, which is taking place in China, the identification of the determinants of self-employment is crucial.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Emerald Group Publishing in its journal International Journal of Manpower.
Volume (Year): 33 (2012)
Issue (Month): 1 (June)
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.emeraldinsight.com
Postal: Emerald Group Publishing, Howard House, Wagon Lane, Bingley, BD16 1WA, UK
Other versions of this item:
- Giulietti, Corrado & Ning, Guangjie & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2011. "Self-Employment of Rural-to-Urban Migrants in China," IZA Discussion Papers 5805, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Giulietti, Corrado & Ning, Guangjie & Zimmermann, Klaus F, 2011. "Self-employment of rural-to-urban migrants in China," CEPR Discussion Papers 8473, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
- J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
- O15 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Meng, Xin & Zhang, Junsen, 2001. "The Two-Tier Labor Market in Urban China: Occupational Segregation and Wage Differentials between Urban Residents and Rural Migrants in Shanghai," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 485-504, September.
- Gagnon, Jason & Xenogiani, Theodora & Xing, Chunbing, 2009.
"Are all migrants really worse off in urban labour markets: new empirical evidence from China,"
16109, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Jason Gagnon & Theodora Xenogiani & Chunbing Xing, 2009. "Are all Migrants Really Worse off in Urban Labour Markets?: New empirical evidence from China," OECD Development Centre Working Papers 278, OECD Publishing.
- Gagnon, Jason & Xenogiani, Theodora & Xing, Chunbing, 2011. "Are All Migrants Really Worse Off in Urban Labour Markets? New Empirical Evidence from China," IZA Discussion Papers 6268, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Jason Gagnon & Theodora Xenogiani & Chunbing Xing, 2012. "Are All Migrants Really Worse Off in Urban Labour Markets? New Empirical Evidence from China," Working Papers id:4698, eSocialSciences.
- Herbert BrÃ¼cker & Parvati TrÃ¼bswetter, 2007.
"Do the best go west? An analysis of the self-selection of employed East-West migrants in Germany,"
Springer, vol. 34(4), pages 371-395, September.
- Herbert Brücker & Parvati Trübswetter, 2004. "Do the Best Go West?: An Analysis of the Self-Selection of Employed East-West Migrants in Germany," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 396, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
- Brücker, Herbert & Trübswetter, Parvati, 2004. "Do the Best Go West? An Analysis of the Self-Selection of Employed East-West Migrants in Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 986, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Willis, Robert J & Rosen, Sherwin, 1979.
"Education and Self-Selection,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(5), pages S7-36, October.
- Blanchflower, D.G. & Oswald, A., 1991.
"What Makes an Entrepreneur?,"
Economics Series Working Papers
99125, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
- Arias, Omar & Khamis, Melanie, 2008. "Comparative Advantage, Segmentation and Informal Earnings: A Marginal Treatment Effects Approach," IZA Discussion Papers 3916, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Patricio Valenzuela & Hugo R. Ñopo, 2007.
"Becoming an Entrepreneur,"
6844, Inter-American Development Bank.
- Zhang, Junfu & Zhao, Zhong, 2011. "Social-Family Network and Self-Employment: Evidence from Temporary Rural-Urban Migrants in China," IZA Discussion Papers 5446, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes & Kusum Mundra, 2007. "Social networks and their impact on the earnings of Mexican Migrants," Demography, Springer, vol. 44(4), pages 849-863, November.
- Rosen, Harvey S., 1979. "Housing decisions and the U.S. income tax : An econometric analysis," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 1-23, February.
- Chiswick, Barry R, 1978. "The Effect of Americanization on the Earnings of Foreign-born Men," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(5), pages 897-921, October.
- Lee, Lung-Fei, 1978. "Unionism and Wage Rates: A Simultaneous Equations Model with Qualitative and Limited Dependent Variables," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 19(2), pages 415-33, June.
- Birgitta Rabe, 2011. "Dual-earner migration. Earnings gains, employment and self-selection," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 24(2), pages 477-497, April.
- David Roodman, 2009. "Estimating Fully Observed Recursive Mixed-Process Models with cmp," Working Papers 168, Center for Global Development.
- Hongbin Li & Zheyu Yang & Xianguo Yao & Junsen Zhang, 2009. "Entrepreneurship and Growth: Evidence from China," Discussion Papers 00022, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Department of Economics.
- Song, Lina & Appleton, Simon, 2008. "Social Protection and Migration in China: What Can Protect Migrants from Economic Uncertainty?," IZA Discussion Papers 3594, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Elaine Liu & Paul Frijters & Tao Sherry Kong, 2013. "Who is Coming to the Experiment? A Cautionary Tale from China," Working Papers 201309854, Department of Economics, University of Houston.
- Cui, Yuling & Nahm, Daehoon & Tani, Massimiliano, 2013. "Self-Employment in China: Are Rural Migrant Workers and Urban Residents Alike?," IZA Discussion Papers 7191, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Giulietti, Corrado & Wahba, Jackline & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2013. "Entrepreneurship of the Left-Behind," IZA Discussion Papers 7270, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Peter Simmons & Yuanyuan Xie, 2013. "Three musketeers: A dynamic model of capital inflow (FDI), the real wage rate and the net migration flow with empirical application," Discussion Papers 13/28, Department of Economics, University of York.
- Akgüc, Mehtap & Giulietti, Corrado & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2013. "The RUMiC Longitudinal Survey: Fostering Research on Labor Markets in China," IZA Discussion Papers 7860, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Cui, Yuling & Nahm, Daehoon & Tani, Massimiliano, 2012. "The Determinants of Rural Migrants' Employment Choice in China: Results from a Joint Estimation," IZA Discussion Papers 6968, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Fields, Gary S. & Song, Yang, 2013. "A Theoretical Model of the Chinese Labor Market," IZA Discussion Papers 7278, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Virginia Chapman).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.