The Quality of Migrant Schools in China & and Other Research on China

In October 2018, Klaus F. Zimmermann, UNU-MERIT at Maastricht University, and  President of the Global Labor Organization (GLO) has taken office at Renmin University of China to discuss joint research interests with colleagues in Beijing. He also promotes research on China, which has been published by the Journal of Population Economics (see below), the academic journal he is heading as the Editor-in-Chief.

The Journal had recently published many studies on China. For instance, it has been found that due to substantial additional government subsidies, the quality of migrant schools has increased:

Quality of migrant schools in China: evidence from a longitudinal study in Shanghai by Yuanyuan Chen, Shuaizhang Feng; Vol. 30:3, 1007-1034

Yuanyuan Chen (Shanghai University of Finance and Economics) & Shuaizhang Feng (Jinan University) are both GLO Fellows.

Abstract: “As spaces in public schools are limited, a substantial number of migrant children living in Chinese cities but without local hukou are enrolled in private migrant schools. This paper studies the quality of migrant schools using data collected in Shanghai in 2010 and 2012. Although students in migrant schools perform considerably worse than their counterparts in public schools, the test score difference in mathematics has almost been halved between 2010 and 2012, due to increased financial subsidy from the government. We rule out alternative explanations for the convergence in test scores. We also conduct a falsification test and find no relative changes in the performance of migrant school students based on a follow-up survey of a new cohort of students in 2015 and 2016, a period with no changes in financial subsidies to migrant schools.”

Shuaizhang Feng (right) & Zimmermann at Jinan University in March 2018.

Journal of Population Economics

Three decades of publishing research in population economics by Alessio J. G. Brown & Klaus F. Zimmermann; Journal of Population Economics (2017) 30: 1, 11–27

Klaus F. Zimmermann, Report of the Editor-in-Chief, 2018



How does internal migration affect the emotional health of elderly parents left-behind? By Juliane Scheffel, Yiwei Zhang

The dragon cohort of Hong Kong: traditional beliefs, demographics, and education by Yan Lau


Informal search, bad search?: The effects of job search method on wages among rural migrants in urban China by Yuanyuan Chen, Le Wang, Min Zhang; Vol. 31:3, 837-876

The intergenerational education spillovers of pension reform in China by Cheng Yuan, Chengjian Li, Lauren A. Johnston; Vol. 31:3, 671-701

Run away? Air pollution and emigration interests in China by Yu Qin, Hongjia Zhu; Vol. 31: 1, 235-266

The heterogeneous impact of pension income on elderly living arrangements: evidence from China’s new rural pension scheme by Lingguo Cheng, Hong Liu, Ye Zhang, Zhong Zhao; Vol. 31: 1, 155-192


Quality of migrant schools in China: evidence from a longitudinal study in Shanghai by Yuanyuan Chen, Shuaizhang Feng; Vol. 30:3, 1007-1034

Sibling gender composition’s effect on education: evidence from China by Xiaoyan Lei, Yan Shen, James P. Smith, Guangsu Zhou; Vol. 30:2, 569-590

China’s family planning policies and their labor market consequences by Fei Wang, Liqiu Zhao, Zhong Zhao; Vol 30:1, 31-68


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