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Migration and Young Child Nutrition: Evidence from Rural China

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  • Mu, Ren

    ()
    (Texas A&M University)

  • de Brauw, Alan

    ()
    (International Food Policy Research Institute)

Abstract

The unprecedented large scale rural-to-urban migration in China has left many rural children living apart from their parents. In this study, we examine the impact of parental migration on the nutritional status of young children in rural areas. We use the interaction terms between wage growth in provincial capital cities and initial village migrant networks as instrumental variables to account for migration selection. Our results show that parental migration has no significant impact on the height of children, but it improves their weight. We provide suggestive evidence that the improvement in weight may be achieved through increased access to tap water in migrant households. Concerns about the sustainability of the impact on weight are raised in the conclusions.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 7466.

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Length: 49 pages
Date of creation: Jun 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7466

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Keywords: migration; children; nutrition; rural China; child nutrition;

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  1. Xinxin Chen & Qiuqiong Huang & Scott Rozelle & Yaojiang Shi & Linxiu Zhang, 2009. "Effect of Migration on Children's Educational Performance in Rural China," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 51(3), pages 323-343, September.
  2. Michel, BEINE & Frédéric, DOCQUIER & Hillel, RAPOPORT, 2006. "Brain drain and human capital formation in developing countries : winners and losers," Discussion Papers (ECON - Département des Sciences Economiques) 2006023, Université catholique de Louvain, Département des Sciences Economiques.
  3. Keith Finlay & Leandro M. Magnusson, 2009. "Implementing weak-instrument robust tests for a general class of instrumental-variables models," Stata Journal, StataCorp LP, vol. 9(3), pages 398-421, September.
  4. Mangyo, Eiji, 2008. "The effect of water accessibility on child health in China," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(5), pages 1343-1356, September.
  5. Lars Osberg & Jiaping Shao & Kuan Xu, 2009. "The growth of poor children in China 1991–2000: why food subsidies may matter," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(S1), pages S89-S108, April.
  6. Mansuri, Ghazala, 2006. "Migration,sex bias, and child growth in rural Pakistan," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3946, The World Bank.
  7. Azzarri, Carlo & Zezza, Alberto, 2011. "International migration and nutritional outcomes in Tajikistan," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 54-70, February.
  8. Zhang, Jing, 2012. "The impact of water quality on health: Evidence from the drinking water infrastructure program in rural China," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 122-134.
  9. Jeffrey M. Wooldridge, 2001. "Econometric Analysis of Cross Section and Panel Data," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262232197, December.
  10. Carletto, Calogero & Covarrubias, Katia & Maluccio, John A., 2011. "Migration and child growth in rural Guatemala," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 16-27, February.
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