Migration and Experienced Utility of Left-behind Parents: Evidence from Rural China

85 Pages Posted: 6 Aug 2020

See all articles by Shu Cai

Shu Cai

Jinan University

Albert Park

Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST); Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST) - HKUST Institute for Emerging Market Studies (IEMS)

Winnie Yip

University of Oxford - Blavatnik School of Government

Date Written: May 29, 2020

Abstract

Using panel data on experienced utility measured by the Day Reconstruction Method, this paper examines the impact of children’s migration on the well-being of left-behind parents. Exploiting exogenous variation in exposure to employment shocks at migration destinations for identification, we find that left-behind parents experienced lower utility when their adult children migrated. Part of this negative effect is due to increased working time and less time spent in social activities, and part is due to reduced utility within activity type. We find evidence that this latter effect is associated with less physical care and psychological support from children who have migrated. Our findings suggest these negative effects dominate the possible benefits of greater income associated with children’s migration.

Keywords: migration, the left behind, experienced utility, time-use, subjective well-being

JEL Classification: J22, O15, I31

Suggested Citation

Cai, Shu and Park, Albert and Yip, Winnie, Migration and Experienced Utility of Left-behind Parents: Evidence from Rural China (May 29, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3647082 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3647082

Shu Cai (Contact Author)

Jinan University ( email )

601 W. Huangpu Ave., Tianhe District
Guangzhou, Guangdong 510632
China

Albert Park

Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST) ( email )

Clearwater Bay
Kowloon, 999999
Hong Kong

Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST) - HKUST Institute for Emerging Market Studies (IEMS) ( email )

IAS 2019, Lo Ka Chung Building,
Lee Shau Kee Campus, HKUST
Clear Water Bay, Kowloon
Hong Kong

HOME PAGE: http://iems.ust.hk

Winnie Yip

University of Oxford - Blavatnik School of Government ( email )

10 Merton St
Oxford, Oxfordshire OX1 4JJ
United Kingdom

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
10
Abstract Views
149
PlumX Metrics