Matching Inequality and Strategic Behavior under the Boston Mechanism: Evidence from China’s College Admissions

47 Pages Posted: 23 Jan 2017 Last revised: 18 May 2021

See all articles by Binzhen Wu

Binzhen Wu

Tsinghua University - School of Economics & Management

Xiaohan Zhong

Tsinghua University - School of Economics & Management

Date Written: December 1, 2016

Abstract

We develop a method to measure the fairness of school matching mechanisms and apply it to the Boston mechanism used in the Chinese college admissions system. Fairness is measured by mismatch, or the gap between the actual and fair matching outcomes. An individual’s mismatch is then related to his/her behavior toward the first choice in the preference list. We find substantial mismatch and significant demographic differences using the 2003 administrative data from college admissions in China. Risk aversion, information disadvantage, and policy favors can explain the gender differences, rural-urban divide and racial gaps found in mismatch and first-choice behavior, respectively.

Keywords: China’s College Admission; School Choice; Matching Quality; Strategic Behavior; Boston Matching Mechanism

JEL Classification: C78; D61; D78; I28

Suggested Citation

Wu, Binzhen and Zhong, Xiaohan, Matching Inequality and Strategic Behavior under the Boston Mechanism: Evidence from China’s College Admissions (December 1, 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2902729 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2902729

Binzhen Wu

Tsinghua University - School of Economics & Management ( email )

School of Economics and Management
Tsinghua University
Beijing, Beijing 100084
China

Xiaohan Zhong (Contact Author)

Tsinghua University - School of Economics & Management ( email )

Beijing, 100084
China

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