Happiness in the dual society of urban China:Hukou identity, horizontal inequality and heterogeneous reference
This paper studies the impact of income inequality on the subjective well-being of different social groups in urban China. We classify urban social groups according to their hukou status: rural migrants, "born?urban residents, and "acquired?urban residents who once changed their hukou identity from rural to urban. We focus on how the horizontal inequality-income disparity between migrants and urban residents-affects individual happiness. The main results are as follows. First, migrants suffer from unhappiness when the horizontal inequality increases, but urban residents show a much smaller aversion to the horizontal inequality. Second, migrants will not be happier if their relative incomes within their migrant group increase, while urban residents do become happier when their incomes increase within their group's income distribution. Third, "acquired?urban residents have traits of both migrants and "born?urban residents. They have an aversion to the horizontal inequality like migrants, and they also favor higher relative income among urban residents. Fourth, "born?urban residents have lower happiness scores when they are old. People who are Communist Party members strongly dislike the horizontal inequality. Our findings suggest that migrants, "acquired?urban residents, elderly people and Party members from "born?urban residents are the potential proponents of social integration policies in urban China.
|Date of creation:||2008|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: +32 (0) 16 / 32 6598
Fax: +32 (0) 16 / 32 6599
Web page: http://www.econ.kuleuven.be/licos
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Alesina, Alberto & Di Tella, Rafael & MacCulloch, Robert, 2004.
"Inequality and happiness: are Europeans and Americans different?,"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 88(9-10), pages 2009-2042, August.
- Di Tella, Rafael & Alesina, Alberto & MacCulloch, Robert, 2004. "Inequality and Happiness: Are Europeans and Americans Different?," Scholarly Articles 4553007, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Alesina, Alberto F & Di Tella, Rafael & MacCulloch, Robert, 2001. "Inequality and Happiness: Are Europeans and Americans Different?," CEPR Discussion Papers 2877, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Alberto Alesina & Rafael Di Tella & Robert MacCulloch, 2001. "Inequality and Happiness: Are Europeans and Americans Different?," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1938, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
- Alberto Alesina & Rafael Di Tella & Robert MacCulloch, 2001. "Inequality and Happiness: Are Europeans and Americans Different?," NBER Working Papers 8198, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Appleton, Simon & Song, Lina & Xia, Qingjie, 2005. "Has China crossed the river? The evolution of wage structure in urban China during reform and retrenchment," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 644-663, December.
- KNIGHT, John & SONG, Lina & GUNATILAKA, Ramani, 2009.
"Subjective well-being and its determinants in rural China,"
China Economic Review,
Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 635-649, December.
- John Knight & Lina Song, 2007. "Subjective Well-being and its Determinants in Rural China," Economics Series Working Papers 334, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
- Shuang LI & Ming LU & Hiroshi Sato, 2008. "The Value of Power in China: How Do Party Membership and Social Networks Affect Pay in Different Ownership Sectors?," Global COE Hi-Stat Discussion Paper Series gd08-011, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
- Zhao Chen & Shiqing Jiang & Ming Lu & Hiroshi Sato, 2008.
"How Do Heterogeneous Social Interactions Affect the Peer Effect in Rural-Urban Migration?: Empirical Evidence from China,"
Global COE Hi-Stat Discussion Paper Series
gd08-008, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
- Zhao Chen & Shiqing Jiang & Ming Lu & Hiroshi Sato, 2008. "How do Heterogeneous Social Interactions affect the Peer Effect in Rural-Urban Migration?:Empirical Evidence from China," LICOS Discussion Papers 22408, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
- Liu, Zhiqiang, 2005. "Institution and inequality: the hukou system in China," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 133-157, March.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:lic:licosd:22308. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ()
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.