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How Does Public Assistance Affect Family Expenditures? The Case of Urban China

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  • Gao, Qin
  • Zhai, Fuhua
  • Garfinkel, Irwin

Abstract

Summary Using recent national household survey data and a propensity score matching method, this study examines the effects of urban China's primary public assistance program--Minimum Living Standard Assistance (MLSA)--on family expenditures, an important yet understudied indicator of family material well-being. We find that families receiving MLSA prioritized human capital investment (i.e., paying for education and health) rather than making the ends meet (e.g., paying for food, clothing, rent, and utilities). The policy implications of these findings are discussed.

Suggested Citation

  • Gao, Qin & Zhai, Fuhua & Garfinkel, Irwin, 2010. "How Does Public Assistance Affect Family Expenditures? The Case of Urban China," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(7), pages 989-1000, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:38:y:2010:i:7:p:989-1000
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:spr:soinre:v:132:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1007_s11205-015-1174-4 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Golan, Jennifer & Sicular, Terry & Umapathi, Nithin, 2017. "Unconditional Cash Transfers in China: Who Benefits from the Rural Minimum Living Standard Guarantee (Dibao) Program?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 316-336.
    3. Gao, Qin & Zhai, Fuhua & Yang, Sui & Li, Shi, 2014. "Does Welfare Enable Family Expenditures on Human Capital? Evidence from China," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 219-231.
    4. Qin Gao & Shiyou Wu & Fuhua Zhai, 2015. "Welfare Participation and Time Use in China," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 124(3), pages 863-887, December.

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