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Academic profile of Chinese economists: Productivity, pay, time use, gender differences, and impacts of COVID-19


  • Jiao, Yang
  • Qi, Li
  • Chen, Zhuo


Using two waves of surveys (2019 and 2021) among Chinese economists with support from the Chinese Economists Society (CES), we capture a current profile of Chinese academic economists on their demographics, education, academic rank, wage, time use, research interests, and productivity. Our data reveal many similarities among those employed in China and overseas, with statistically significant differences in pay and teaching load. More profound disparities lie in gender comparisons, with findings echoing the recent trend in the overall economics profession, including career advancement challenges for women and lower pay for female economists, among others. Finally, this paper investigates the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Chinese economists. Comparing their time allocation with that before the pandemic suggests male economists with children were able to spend slightly more time per workday on research and leisure during the pandemic. On the contrary, female economists with children reduced time for research to cope with the increased demand for childcare.

Suggested Citation

  • Jiao, Yang & Qi, Li & Chen, Zhuo, 2023. "Academic profile of Chinese economists: Productivity, pay, time use, gender differences, and impacts of COVID-19," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 81(C).
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:chieco:v:81:y:2023:i:c:s1043951x23001165
    DOI: 10.1016/j.chieco.2023.102031

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    More about this item


    Economists; China; Gender disparity; Wage differentials; COVID-19; The Chinese Economists Society;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J20 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - General
    • J40 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - General


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