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Effect of industrial structure on urban–rural income inequality in China

Effect of industrial structure on urban–rural income inequality in China Since 1978, China has made tremendous economic achievements through industrial upgrading. However, these achievements are accompanied by an expanding income gap between rural and urban areas. The purpose of this paper is to examine the relationship between industrial structure and urban–rural income inequality in China.Design/methodology/approachUsing the fixed-effects model and provincial data for the period 1985–2019, this paper estimates a linear relationship between industrial structure and urban–rural income inequality. By decomposing total income inequality into four components, the paper then analyzes how industrial structure affects each component.FindingsThe results show that industrial structure imbalance and industrial upgrading are positively associated with urban–rural income inequality. The positive effect of industrial imbalance mainly comes from widening the wage gap, while that of industrial upgrading mainly comes from aggravating business income inequality and property income inequality. Moreover, industrial balance and upgrading are conducive to increasing the share of wage income at the cost of property income.Originality/valueBy progressively examining the total inequality and the inequality of income components, this paper provides a better understanding of how industrial structure affects urban and rural income inequality. The findings of this study highlight the “inequality cost” associated with industrial structure adjustment, which provide policy-related insights on the balance development of urban and rural areas. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png China Agricultural Economic Review Emerald Publishing

Effect of industrial structure on urban–rural income inequality in China

China Agricultural Economic Review , Volume 14 (3): 20 – Aug 9, 2022

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
1756-137X
DOI
10.1108/caer-05-2021-0096
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Since 1978, China has made tremendous economic achievements through industrial upgrading. However, these achievements are accompanied by an expanding income gap between rural and urban areas. The purpose of this paper is to examine the relationship between industrial structure and urban–rural income inequality in China.Design/methodology/approachUsing the fixed-effects model and provincial data for the period 1985–2019, this paper estimates a linear relationship between industrial structure and urban–rural income inequality. By decomposing total income inequality into four components, the paper then analyzes how industrial structure affects each component.FindingsThe results show that industrial structure imbalance and industrial upgrading are positively associated with urban–rural income inequality. The positive effect of industrial imbalance mainly comes from widening the wage gap, while that of industrial upgrading mainly comes from aggravating business income inequality and property income inequality. Moreover, industrial balance and upgrading are conducive to increasing the share of wage income at the cost of property income.Originality/valueBy progressively examining the total inequality and the inequality of income components, this paper provides a better understanding of how industrial structure affects urban and rural income inequality. The findings of this study highlight the “inequality cost” associated with industrial structure adjustment, which provide policy-related insights on the balance development of urban and rural areas.

Journal

China Agricultural Economic ReviewEmerald Publishing

Published: Aug 9, 2022

Keywords: Urban–rural inequality; Industrial structure; China; D63; I31; O15

References