Parental Migration Decisions and Child Health Outcomes: Evidence from China

44 Pages Posted: 17 Dec 2018

See all articles by Carl Lin

Carl Lin

Bucknell University; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Yana Rodgers

Rutgers University - Department of Women's and Gender Studies

Abstract

This study uses migrant household survey data from 2008 and 2009 to examine how parental migration decisions are associated with the nutritional status of children in rural and urban China. Results from instrumental variables regressions show a substantial adverse effect of children's exposure to parental migration on height-for-age Z-scores of left-behind children relative to children who migrate with their parents. Additional results from a standard Blinder-Oaxaca decomposition, a quantile decomposition, and a counterfactual distribution analysis all confirm that children who are left behind in rural villages – usually because of the oppressive hukou system – have poorer nutritional status than children who migrate with their parents, and the gaps are biggest at lower portions of the distribution.

Keywords: migration, China, children, health, nutrition

JEL Classification: I10, J61

Suggested Citation

Lin, Carl and Rodgers, Yana, Parental Migration Decisions and Child Health Outcomes: Evidence from China. IZA Discussion Paper No. 11986. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3301746

Carl Lin (Contact Author)

Bucknell University ( email )

1 Dent Drive
Lewisburg, PA 17837
United States

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.iza.org/profile?key=6255

Yana Rodgers

Rutgers University - Department of Women's and Gender Studies ( email )

162 Ryders Lane
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
United States
732-932-9331 (Phone)
732-932-1335 (Fax)

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