Knowing One’s Lot in Life Versus Climbing the Social Ladder: The Formation of Redistributive Preferences in Urban China
This paper examines how individual preferences for redistribution depend on beliefs about what determines one's lot in life and self-assessed prospects for climbing the social ladder in urban China. We find that both beliefs about what determines one's lot in life and subjective perceptions of future mobility are correlated with the formation of left-wing beliefs and, by extension, preferences for redistribution. We find that the marginal effects of the variables measuring one's lot in life are larger than self-assessed prospects for climbing the social ladder. These findings are robust to the inclusion of control variables for the personal characteristics of the respondent, including his or her ideology, and the location in which he or she lives.
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Volume (Year): 96 (2010)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
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