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Influence Of Family Background On Current Family Wealth In Rural China


  • LI, SHI


This paper examines the influence of family human capital on offspring's economic status in post reform rural China, using nationally representative cross-sectional survey of rural households for 2002. Focuses are on family class origin and occupational experiences. The major findings are as follows. First, parental experiences of a nonagricultural family business before collectivization have a positive and statistically significant effect on offspring's family wealth. Second, the offspring of landlord/rich peasant and middle peasant families are more likely to have higher family wealth than poor and lower-middle peasant families. The findings suggest the robustness of the rural family as the cultural entity.

Suggested Citation

  • Sato, Hiroshi & Li, Shi, 2013. "Influence Of Family Background On Current Family Wealth In Rural China," Hitotsubashi Journal of Economics, Hitotsubashi University, vol. 54(1), pages 95-117, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:hit:hitjec:v:54:y:2013:i:1:p:95-117

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Robert W. Fairlie & Alicia Robb, 2007. "Families, Human Capital, and Small Business: Evidence from the Characteristics of Business Owners Survey," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 60(2), pages 225-245, January.
    2. Mincer, Jacob & Polachek, Solomon, 1974. "Family Investment in Human Capital: Earnings of Women," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(2), pages 76-108, Part II, .
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    4. Dunn, Thomas & Holtz-Eakin, Douglas, 2000. "Financial Capital, Human Capital, and the Transition to Self-Employment: Evidence from Intergenerational Links," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 18(2), pages 282-305, April.
    5. Thomas Dunn & Douglas Holtz-Eakin, 1996. "Financial Capital, Human Capital, and the Transition to Self-Employment:Evidence from Intergenerational Links," NBER Working Papers 5622, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Robert Erikson & John H. Goldthorpe, 2002. "Intergenerational Inequality: A Sociological Perspective," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(3), pages 31-44, Summer.
    7. Harding, David J. & Jencks, Christopher & Lopoo, Leonard M. & Mayer, Susan E., 2003. "The Changing Effect of Family Background on the Incomes of American Adults," Working Paper Series rwp03-045, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
    8. Barry Naughton, 2007. "The Chinese Economy: Transitions and Growth," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262640643, January.
    9. Hanming Fang & Peter Norman, 2006. "Government-Mandated Discriminatory Policies: Theory And Evidence," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 47(2), pages 361-389, May.
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    More about this item


    human capital; family background; intergenerational correlation; distribution of wealth;

    JEL classification:

    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • N35 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Asia including Middle East
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration


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