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Do rural migrants benefit from labor market agglomeration economies? Evidence from Chinese cities

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  • Guangliang Yang
  • Lixing Li
  • Shihe Fu

Abstract

We combine the 2005 China Inter‐Census Population Survey data and the 2004 China Manufacturing Census to test whether workers, particularly rural migrants, benefit from labor market Marshallian externalities. We find that workers in general, and rural migrants in particular, benefit from labor market pooling effects (measured by total employment in a city‐industry cell) and human capital externalities (measured by share of workers with a college degree or above in a city‐industry cell). These findings are robust to various sorting bias tests. However, rural migrants benefit much less than do local or urban workers, possibly because rural migrants lack social networks and are discriminated doubly in terms of being both “rural” and “migrants.” Our findings have policy implications on how Chinese cities can become skilled during the rapid urbanization process coupled with global competition.

Suggested Citation

  • Guangliang Yang & Lixing Li & Shihe Fu, 2020. "Do rural migrants benefit from labor market agglomeration economies? Evidence from Chinese cities," Growth and Change, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(3), pages 910-931, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:growch:v:51:y:2020:i:3:p:910-931
    DOI: 10.1111/grow.12417
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    JEL classification:

    • J30 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - General
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
    • O18 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure
    • R23 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population

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