Access to Migration for Rural Households
- American Economic Journal: Applied Economics (Forthcoming)
This paper exploits a unique feature of China’s history, the “sent-down youth” (SDY) program, to study the effects of access to internal migration. We show that temporary migration due to the SDY program created lasting inter-province links. We interact these links with two time-varying pull measures in potential destinations. Decades after the SDY program ended, increased access to migration in cities which sent SDY leads to higher rates of migration from provinces where those SDY temporarily resided. We find that improved access to migration leads to lower consumption volatility and lower asset-holding. Furthermore, household production shifts into high-risk, high-return activities.
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