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A Field Study of Chinese Migrant Workers’ Attitudes toward Risks, Strategic Uncertainty, and Competitiveness

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  • Li Hao

    () (Sam M. Walton College of Business, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR 72701, USA)

  • Daniel Houser

    () (George Mason University, 4400 University Drive, MSN 1B2, Fairfax, VA 22030 USA)

  • Lei Mao

    () (Université de Lyon, Lyon, F-69007, France ; CNRS, GATE Lyon St Etienne,F-69130 Ecully, France)

  • Marie Claire Villeval

    () (Université de Lyon, Lyon, F-69007, France ; CNRS, GATE Lyon St Etienne,F-69130 Ecully, France)

Abstract

Using a field experiment in China, we study whether migration status is correlated with attitudes toward risk, ambiguity, and competitiveness. Our subjects include migrants and non-migrants. We find that, migrants exhibit no differences from non-migrants in risk and ambiguity preferences elicited using pairs of lotteries ; however, migrants are significantly more likely to enter competition in the presence of strategic uncertainty when they expect competitive entries from others. Our results suggest that migration may be driven more by a stronger belief in one’s ability to succeed in an uncertain and competitive environment than by risk attitudes under state uncertainty.

Suggested Citation

  • Li Hao & Daniel Houser & Lei Mao & Marie Claire Villeval, 2014. "A Field Study of Chinese Migrant Workers’ Attitudes toward Risks, Strategic Uncertainty, and Competitiveness," Working Papers 1418, Groupe d'Analyse et de Théorie Economique Lyon St-Étienne (GATE Lyon St-Étienne), Université de Lyon.
  • Handle: RePEc:gat:wpaper:1418
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Géraldine Bocquého & Marc Deschamps & Jenny Helstroffer & Julien Jacob & Majlinda Joxhe, 2018. "The risk and refugee migration," Documents de Travail de l'OFCE 2018-10, Observatoire Francais des Conjonctures Economiques (OFCE).
    2. Akgüç, Mehtap & Liu, Xingfei & Tani, Massimiliano & Zimmermann, Klaus F., 2016. "Risk attitudes and migration," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 166-176.
    3. repec:eee:chieco:v:49:y:2018:i:c:p:210-228 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. John Gibson & David McKenzie & Halahingano Rohorua & Steven Stillman, 2016. "The Long-Term Impact of International Migration on Economic Decision-Making: Evidence from a Migration Lottery and Lab-in-the-Field Experiments," CReAM Discussion Paper Series 1614, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Migration; risk preferences; strategic uncertainty; ambiguity; field experiment;

    JEL classification:

    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers

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