E-Commerce Participation and Household Income Growth in Taobao Villages
31 Pages Posted: 11 Apr 2019
Date Written: April 10, 2019
E-commerce has developed rapidly in China, and Taobao Villages, which are villages significantly engaged in e-commerce, are prospering in rural areas. E-commerce is fostering entrepreneurship and creating flexible and inclusive employment opportunities, including for women and youth. This paper examines the role of e-commerce participation in household income growth, drawing from a survey of representative Taobao Villages in 2017. The paper presents three main findings. First, e-commerce participation is not random: participation is higher among the households with younger household heads, with secondary education, particularly those with technical and vocational education, urban work experience, and knowledge of e-commerce. Second, e-commerce participation is associated with higher household income, with some indications that participation has a strong positive effect on household incomes. Third, e-commerce appears to yield benefits that are broadly shared among participants in an equitable way in Taobao Villages.
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