Sunday, Jan. 6, 2019 8:00 AM - 10:00 AM
- Chair: Tien Foo Sing, National University of Singapore
High-Speed Rail Project, Location-Based Policy and Inclusive Growth: Quantitative Case Study of the Experimental High-Speed Rail Project in China
AbstractThis study investigates the economic impacts of High Speed Rail projects (HSR) for targeted city locations with heavy-industry-based economy, taking the first HSR project in China as a case study. Using the synthetic control method by Abadie et al. (2003, 2010, 2015) to construct appropriate counterfactuals, we find that within our policy evaluation period, most of the HSR cities have experienced sustained increase in real GDP per capita. However, the magnitudes of such HSR impacts are very heterogeneous. As for some locations, the local income level increased between 4.6% and 28.1% on average when compared with the counterfactual non-HSR cities. The rest of the locations received negligible impacts. By comparing employment between HSR cities and their synthetic counterparts, we find that there is structural transformation toward service sector. We do not find any evidence for government intervention or investment-driven HSR impacts when the infrastructure construction period was finished. The results suggest that the first HSR project in China can help heavy-industry-based cities following their comparative advantages to promote industry structural transformation and diversification so to achieve inclusive growth.
The Role of High Speed Rail in Facilitating High Skilled Worker Matching and Interaction
AbstractHigh skilled workers gain from face to face interactions. If the skilled can move at higher speeds, then knowledge diffusion and idea spillovers are likely to reach greater distances. This paper uses the construction of China's high speed rail (HSR) network as a natural experiment to test this claim. HSR connects major cities, that feature the nation's best universities, to secondary cities. Since bullet trains reduce cross-city commute times, they reduce the cost of face-to-face interactions between skilled workers who work in different cities. Using a data base listing research paper publication and citations, we document a complementarity effect between knowledge production and the transportation network. Co-authors' productivity rises and more new co-author pairs emerge when secondary cities are connected by bullet train to China's major cities.
International Travel Costs and Local Housing Markets
AbstractThis paper identifies the effect of international travel costs on local housing markets. The international travel cost is measured by whether an American city has launched a nonstop flight to a Chinese city. Using differences-in-differences models, we find that after an American airport connected with China via a nonstop flight, the monthly number of Chinese homebuyers in a county nearby the airport increased by about 0.4 (the mean is 0.9); local housing prices at the county level on average increased by $5900 (4%). We also find a significant decrease in the number of local non-Chinese homebuyers, suggesting a displacement effect in the local housing markets by out-of-town homebuyers. Our findings imply that the spatial equilibrium model based on inter-city migration within a country can be largely generalized to international migration. Our study also contributes to the literature on the economics of air travel and out-of-town homebuyers.
- R4 - Transportation Economics
- O1 - Economic Development