Trade Unions and the Welfare of Rural-Urban Migrant Workers in China

50 Pages Posted: 3 Nov 2020

See all articles by Alison L. Booth

Alison L. Booth

Australian National University (ANU) - Research School of Social Sciences (RSSS); Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Richard B. Freeman

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); University of Edinburgh - School of Social and Political Studies; Harvard University; London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)

Xin Meng

Australian National University; IZA Institute of Labor Economics

James Zhang

Australian National University (ANU)

Date Written: October 1, 2020

Abstract

Using a panel survey, we investigate how the welfare of rural-urban migrant workers in China is affected by trade union presence at the workplace. Controlling for individual fixed- effects, we find the following. Relative to workers from workplaces without union presence or with inactive unions, both union-covered non-members and union members in workplaces with active unions earn higher monthly income, are more likely to have a written contract, be covered by social insurances, receive fringe benefits, express work-related grievances through official channels, feel more satisfied with their lives, and are less likely to have mental health problems.

Keywords: China, Rural-Urban Migration, Trade union

JEL Classification: J5, O53, P21, P30

Suggested Citation

Booth, Alison L. and Freeman, Richard B. and Meng, Xin and Zhang, James, Trade Unions and the Welfare of Rural-Urban Migrant Workers in China (October 1, 2020). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP15350, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3723539

Alison L. Booth

Australian National University (ANU) - Research School of Social Sciences (RSSS) ( email )

Canberra, Australian Capital Territory 0200
Australia
+61 2 6125 3285 (Phone)
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Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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Richard B. Freeman

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

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University of Edinburgh - School of Social and Political Studies ( email )

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Harvard University ( email )

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London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Centre for Economic Performance (CEP) ( email )

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Xin Meng (Contact Author)

Australian National University ( email )

Research School of Economics
College of Business and Economics
Canberra ACT 0200
Australia
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IZA Institute of Labor Economics

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Bonn, D-53072
Germany

James Zhang

Australian National University (ANU) ( email )

Canberra, Australian Capital Territory 2601
Australia

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