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Urban China Series featuring Zhang Jipeng – Hukou Reform, Return Migration,and Implications for Urban Development in China

April 17, 2023 @ 8:30 pm 10:00 pm

Speaker: Zhang Jipeng, Shandong University

In recent years, China has made remarkable progress in Hukou reform. Based on government policy documents and our fieldwork, we construct a quantitative measure of Hukou registration barriers in Chinese cities. First-tier and some second-tier cities set high criteria for local Hukou registration that have become more stringent over time, while other cities have much lower requirements. Drawing on household survey data, we show that stricter Hukou restrictions lead to a significant increase in return migration, especially among those with rural Hukou, low education level, and poor health status. Finally, we estimate the effects of further loosening Hukou restrictions, finding that granting Hukou to migrants in lower-tier cities would increase educational attainment, but impose fiscal strains on top-tier cities.

Jipeng Zhang is a Professor of Economics and a Research Fellow of the Institute of State Governance at the Shandong University. His research interests are public economics, migration and urban development, with a focus on China’s public finance, Hukou reform, and poverty alleviation resettlement.


April 17, 2023
8:30 pm – 10:00 pm
Event Category:


Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies


Presented via Zoom

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