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Living Arrangements of the Elderly in China: Evidence from CHARLS

Author

Listed:
  • Lei, Xiaoyan

    () (Peking University)

  • Strauss, John

    () (University of Southern California)

  • Tian, Meng

    () (Peking University)

  • Zhao, Yaohui

    () (Peking University)

Abstract

Recent increases in Chinese elderly living alone or only with a spouse has raised concerns about elderly support, especially when public support is inadequate. However, using rich information from the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study, we find that the increasing trend in living alone is accompanied with a rise in living close to each other. This type of living arrangement solves the conflicts between privacy/independence and family support. This is confirmed in further investigation: children living close by visit their parents more frequently. We also find that children who live far away provide a larger amount of net transfers to their parents, a result consistent with responsibility sharing among siblings. Having more children is associated with living with a child or having a child nearby, while investing more in a child's schooling is associated with greater net transfers to parents.

Suggested Citation

  • Lei, Xiaoyan & Strauss, John & Tian, Meng & Zhao, Yaohui, 2011. "Living Arrangements of the Elderly in China: Evidence from CHARLS," IZA Discussion Papers 6249, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6249
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Lisa Cameron, 2000. "The residency decision of elderly indonesians: A nested logit analysis," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 37(1), pages 17-27, February.
    2. Eric V. Edmonds & Kristin Mammen & Douglas L. Miller, 2005. "Rearranging the Family?: Income Support and Elderly Living Arrangements in a Low-Income Country," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 40(1).
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    4. Zachary Zimmer & Julia Kwong, 2003. "Family size and support of older adults in urban and rural China: Current effects and future implications," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 40(1), pages 23-44, February.
    5. Gary V. Engelhardt & Jonathan Gruber, 2004. "Social Security and the Evolution of Elderly Poverty," NBER Working Papers 10466, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Kathleen Mcgarry & Robert Schoeni, 2000. "Social security, economic growth, and the rise in elderly widows’ independence in the twentieth century," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 37(2), pages 221-236, May.
    7. Giles, John T. & Mu, Ren, 2006. "Elder Parent Health and the Migration Decision of Adult Children: Evidence from Rural China," IZA Discussion Papers 2333, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    8. John Giles & Ren Mu, 2007. "Elderly parent health and the migration decisions of adult children: Evidence from rural China," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 44(2), pages 265-288, May.
    9. Laurence J. Kotlikoff & John N. Morris, 1990. "Why Don't the Elderly Live with Their Children? A New Look," NBER Chapters,in: Issues in the Economics of Aging, pages 149-172 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Jan Mutchier & Jeffrey Burr, 1991. "A longitudinal analysis of household and nonhousehold living arrangements in later life," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 28(3), pages 375-390, August.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Mu, Ren & Du, Yang, 2012. "Pension Coverage for Parents and Educational Investment in Children: Evidence from Urban China," IZA Discussion Papers 6797, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Bloom, David E. & Luca, Dara Lee, 2016. "The Global Demography of Aging: Facts, Explanations, Future," IZA Discussion Papers 10163, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. Lei, Xiaoyan & Giles, John & Hu, Yuqing & Park, Albert & Strauss, John & Zhao, Yaohui, 2012. "Patterns and correlates of intergenerational non-time transfers : evidence from CHARLS," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6076, The World Bank.
    4. Lingguo Cheng & Hong Liu & Ye Zhang & Zhong Zhao, 2018. "The heterogeneous impact of pension income on elderly living arrangements: evidence from China’s new rural pension scheme," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 31(1), pages 155-192, January.
    5. repec:eee:jcecon:v:46:y:2018:i:1:p:53-77 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Wang, Le, 2013. "Estimating returns to education when the IV sample is selective," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(C), pages 74-85.
    7. repec:eee:hapoch:v1_3 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Cheng, Lingguo & Liu, Hong & Zhang, Ye & Zhao, Zhong, 2018. "The health implications of social pensions: Evidence from China's new rural pension scheme," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 53-77.
    9. Connelly, Rachel & Iannotti, Michael & Maurer-Fazio, Margaret & Zhang, Dandan, 2014. "Coresidency, Ethnicity, and Happiness of China's Rural Elders," IZA Discussion Papers 8194, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    10. Sen Ma & Fangqi Wen, 2016. "Who Coresides With Parents? An Analysis Based on Sibling Comparative Advantage," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 53(3), pages 623-647, June.
    11. Yang, Juan & SICULAR, Terry & LAI, Desheng, 2014. "The changing determinants of high school attainment in rural China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 551-566.
    12. repec:oup:wbecrv:v:31:y:2017:i:2:p:483-503. is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    living arrangement; coresidence; proximity of children; CHARLS;

    JEL classification:

    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure
    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination

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