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Migration and transformation of rural China

Zai Liang, University at Albany, State University of New York (SUNY)
Miao David Chunyu, Brown University
Zhongdong Ma, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

This paper examines the impact of migration on non-farm employment opportunities. We draw on data from the 2003 China Rural Household Survey (for Anhui province in central China). Our theoretical focuses on migration experience as a human capital that is capable of leading to more non-farm employment opportunities. The discussion is also informed by recent scholarly efforts that deal with changes in China’s rural political economy, especially the role of local cadres. Preliminary findings suggest that return migrants are more likely to participate in non-farm employment as well as employment in township and village enterprises (TVEs) than non-migrants. For individuals who are from households with active migrants out, the chance of non-farm work is reduced probably because of increased household demand for farm-work. The study also highlights the importance of skill training as a way to transform the labor force from farm work oriented to non-farm employment.

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Presented in Poster Session 3: Poster Session 3: migration, environment and spatial demography