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    Journal Article

    Xiaobing Wang, Renfu Luo, Linxiu Zhang, Scott Rozelle
    Journal of Development Studies, 2017

    Rural residents in China today face at least two key decisions: a) where to live and work; and b) where to send their children to school. In this paper we study the second decision: should a rural parent send their child to a public rural school or have him or her attend a private migrant school in the city. While there is an existing literature on the impact of this decision on student academic performance, one of the main shortcomings of current studies is that the data that are used to analyse this issue are not fully comparable.

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    Working Paper

    Huan Zhou, Ben Hartwell, Grace Barket, Tom Kennedy, Tiaoying Li, Alexis Medina, Scott Rozelle, John Openshaw
    Working Paper, 2017

    Affecting more than one billion people around the world, neglected tropical diseases are a group of diseases which mainly occur in poor populations living in tropical and subtropical environments. Although considered a middle-income country, neglected diseases persist in many rural areas of China. Neurocysticercosis (NCC), an infection caused when the larvae of the tapeworm Taenia solium (T. solium) enters the human brain, is a prime example of this. Infection can lead to seizures, severe headaches, decreased cognitive abilities and other debilitating neurologic symptoms.

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    Journal Article

    Sean Sylvia, Hao Xue, Chengchao Zhou, Yaojiang Shi, Hongmei Yi, Huan Zhou, Scott Rozelle, Madhukar Pai, Jishnu Das
    PLoS Medicine, 2017

    Despite recent reductions in prevalence, China still faces a substantial tuberculosis (TB) burden, with future progress dependent on the ability of rural providers to appropriately detect and refer TB patients for further care. This study (a) provides a baseline assessment of the ability of rural providers to correctly manage presumptive TB cases; (b) measures the gap between provider knowledge and practice and; (c) evaluates how ongoing reforms of China’s health system—characterized by a movement toward “integrated care” and promo- tion of initial contact with grassroots providers—will affect the care of TB patients.

     

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    Working Paper

    Guirong Li, Millie Lin, Chengfang Liu, Angela Johnson, Yanyan Li, Prashant Loyalka
    Working Paper, 2017

    Empirical evidence from developed countries supports the idea that parent-teacher interaction is high and improves student outcomes. The evidence from developing countries is, however, decidedly mixed. Using longitudinal data that we collected from nearly 6,000 students and 600 teachers in rural China, we show that the prevalence of parent-teacher interaction is generally much lower than that of developed countries, especially for disadvantaged students.

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    Journal Article

    Xiaobing Wang, Yu Bai, Linxiu Zhang, Scott Rozelle
    2017

    THE FAST PACE OF economic growth in China is in no small part attributed to the massive movement of migrant workers from rural to urban areas. It is estimated that in 2014 more than 168 million migrants were living and working in China’s cities (NBSC 2015). In China, as elsewhere, migration imparts significant benefits to individuals through the higher returns to work; it can also have strong and transformative impacts on both the origin and destination communities (Taylor, Rozelle, and de Brauw 2003; Du, Park, and Wang 2005; Gibson and McKenzie 2012).

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    Journal Article

    Zhang Jian, Scott Rozelle
    Journal of Central University of Finance & Economics (Chinese), 2017
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    Journal Article

    Ai Yue, Xiaohang Wang, Sha Yang, Yaojiang Shi, Renfu Luo, Qi Zhang, Kaleigh Kenny, Scott Rozelle
    Chinese Journal of Sociology, 2017

    Abstract: Social interactions in infancy have implications for long-term outcomes. This study uses data from a sample of 1412 rural Chinese infants aged 6–12 and 24–30 months to examine the relationship between peer interactions and cognitive development. Over 75% of the infants in this sample had less than three peers and around 20% had no peers in both periods. The prevalence of cognitive delays is high within this sample and increases as infants age. Multivariate analysis reveals that peer interaction is significantly associated with cognitive development.

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    Journal Article

    Lili Li, Lei Wang, Jingchun Nie
    China and World Economy, 2017

    China’s rapid development and urbanization over the past 30 years have caused large numbers of rural residents to migrate to urban areas in search of work. This has created a generation of children who remain behind in rural areas when their parents migrate for work. Previous research has found mixed impacts of parental migration on the educational achievement of left-behind children (LBC), perhaps because of methodological deficiencies and lack of recognition of the heterogeneity of this population of children.

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    Journal Article

    Chengfang Liu, Louise Lou, Linxiu Zhang, Renfu Luo, Sean Sylvia, Alexis Medina, Scott Rozelle, Darvin Scott Smith, Yingdan Chen, Tingjun Zhu
    American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 2017

    Abstract: Soil-transmitted helminths (STHs) infect over one billion people worldwide. There is concern that chronic infection with STHs among school-aged children may detrimentally affect their development, including their health, cognition, and education. However, two recent Cochrane reviews examining the impact of deworming drugs for STH on nutrition, hemoglobin, and school performance found that randomized controlled trials (RCTs) in the literature provide an insufficient evidence base to draw reliable conclusions.

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    Working Paper

    Prashant Loyalka, Guirong Li, Chengfang Liu
    Working Paper, 2017

    Despite massive investments in teacher professional development (PD) programs in developing countries, there is little evidence on their effectiveness. We present the results of a large-scale, randomized evaluation of a high-profile PD program in China, in which teachers were randomized to receive PD; PD plus follow-up; PD plus evaluation of their command of the PD content; or no PD. Precise estimates indicate that PD and associated interventions failed to improve teacher and student outcomes.

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    Journal Article

    Prashant Loyalka, James Chu, Jianguo Wei, Natalie Johnson, Joel Reniker
    China Quarterly, 2017

    Inequalities in college access are a major concern for policymakers in both developed and developing countries. Policymakers in China have largely tried to address these inequalities by helping disadvantaged students successfully transition from high school to college. However, they have paid less attention to the possibility that inequalities in college access may also arise earlier in the pathway to college. The purpose of this paper is to understandwhere inequalities emerge along the pathway to college in China, focusing on threemajor milestones after junior high. By analysing administrative data on over 300,000 students fromone region ofChina,we find that the largest inequalities in college access emerge at the first post-compulsory milestone along the pathway to college: when students transition from junior high to high school. Inparticular, only 60per cent of students frompoorcounties take the highschool entrance exam(comparedtonearly100 per centof students fromnon-poorcounties). Furthermore, students from poor counties are about one and a half times less likely toattendacademic highschoolandeliteacademic highschool thanstudents from non-poor counties.

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    Working Paper

    Prashant Loyalka, Prashant Loyalka, Sean Sylvia
    Working Paper, 2017
    We examine the impact of the competitive “STEM track choice”—a defining institutional feature of a number of national education systems—on gender gaps in STEM majors and college access. Many national education systems require high school students to make a largely irreversible, competitive choice between STEM and non-STEM tracks. This choice determines whether students will compete with STEM or non-STEM track students for college entrance.
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    Working Paper

    Meichen Lu, Yaojiang Shi, Fang Chang, Kaleigh Kenny, Scott Rozelle
    2017
    Evidence from developed countries shows that there is a significant gender gap in STEM occupations. Girls may begin to underperform in math early as primary school. One possible explanation is the negative stereotype threat towards girls. However, this has been understudied in rural China. In this paper, we describe the math performance gender gap in rural China, compare the gender gap between rural and urban China, and finally compare the Chinese situation with other countries. We further examine possible explanations for the math performance gender gap from comparative perspectives.
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    Working Paper

    Meichen Lu, Prashant Loyalka, Yaojiang Shi, Fang Chang, Chengfang Liu, Scott Rozelle
    Working Paper, 2017

    There is a significant gap in academic achievement between rural and urban students in China. Policymakers have sought to close this gap by improving the quality of teaching in rural areas through teacher professional development (PD) programs. Despite billions of dollars in investment, however, there is limited evidence on the effectiveness of such programs. In this paper, we evaluate the impact of a PD program-National Teacher Training Program (NTTP) on the academic achievement of students in rural China.

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    Journal Article

    Hongbin Li, Prashant Loyalka, Binzhen Wu, Scott Rozelle
    Journal of Economic Perspectives, 2017

    China’s real GDP per capita has increased at a rate of nearly 9 percent annually since the start of its economic reforms in 1978, the fastest rate of growth that any large country has sustained for such a long period of time. Output is equal to the number of workers multiplied by productivity per worker. Thus, China’s dramatic growth can be broken down into the increases of the size of working-age labor force as a proportion of the population (or, in other words, the decrease of the dependency ratio) and improving labor productivity.

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    Working Paper

    Ai Yue, Sean Sylvia, Yaojiang Shi, Renfu Luo, Scott Rozelle
    Working Paper, 2016

    Nearly a quarter of all children under the age of two in China are left behind in the countryside as parents migrate to urban areas for work. We use a longitudinal survey following young children and their caregivers from 6 to 30 months of age to estimate the effects of maternal migration on development, health, and nutritional outcomes in the critical first stages of life.We find significant negative effects on cognitive development and indicators of dietary quality.

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    Journal Article

    Jingchun Nie, Xiaopeng Pang, Sean Sylvia, Lei Wang, Scott Rozelle
    2016

    We present the results of a randomized trial testing the impact of providing free eyeglasses on academic outcomes of junior high school students in a poor rural area of western China. We find that providing free prescription eyeglasses approximately halves dropout rates over a school year among students who did not own eyeglasses at baseline. Effects on dropout are mirrored by improvements in student performance on standardized exams in math and aspirations for further schooling

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    Working Paper

    Ai Yue, Shan Li, Meini Shi, Yaojiang Shi, Renfu Luo, Kaleigh Kenny, Scott Rozelle
    Working Paper, 2016

    The first years of life comprise a critical period for social-emotional development that has implications for lifelong outcomes. One factor that is thought to impact infant socialemotional development is parenting behavior and practices, such as reading to, singing to, and playing with their child. In this study we examine the situation of parenting practices and infant social-emotional development among a sample of 1,350 infants aged 18-30 months in rural Shaanxi Province, China.

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    Journal Article

    Hua Zhou, Di Mo, Chengchao Zhou, Alexis Medina, Yaojiang Shi, Linxiu Zhang, Scott Rozelle
    International Journal of Equity in Health, 2016
    Background: The gender gap remains a major impediment in the path towards equality and it is especially wide in low-income countries. Up to the early 2000s, many studies documented extensive inequalities in China: girls had poorer health, less nutrition and less education than their male counterparts. The goal of this study is to examine whether the gender gap persists, given that China is now making the transition into the ranks of upper-middle income countries. We consider educational outcomes, mental and physical health status, as well as non-cognitive outcomes.
     
    Methods: We draw on a dataset containing 69,565 observations constructed by combining data from 7 different school-level surveys spanning 5 provinces. The surveys were all conducted by the authors between 2008 and 2013 using uniform survey instruments and data collection protocols in randomly selected schools across western provinces in rural China. The sample children range in age from 9 to 14 years (with 79 % of the sample being aged 10 to 12). Our analysis compares rural girls with rural boys in terms of 13 different indicators.
     
    Results: With the exception of anemia rates, the health outcomes of girls are equal to those of boys. Girls and boys are statistically identical in terms of weight-for-age, height-for-age, and prevalence of intestinal worm infections. Girls performed better than boys on five of six cognitive and educational performance indicators. Girls performed worse than boys on all mental health indicators. All estimates are robust to the inclusion of different age ranges, controlling for the level of household assets, ethnic minority status, as well as the addition of provincial dummies.
     
    Conclusions: Our findings suggest that with the exception of non-cognitive outcomes, anemia and standardized math test scores, the gender gap in our study areas in China appears to be diminishing.

     

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    Journal Article

    Fang Lai, Linxiu Zhang, Yu Bai, Chengfang Liu, Fang Chang, Yaojiang Shi, Scott Rozelle
    Journal of Development Effectiveness, 2016

    The education of poor and disadvantaged populations has been a long-standing challenge for education systems in both developed and developing countries. Drawing on data from two randomised controlled trials involving two cohorts of grade 3 students in poor rural minority schools in China’s Qinghai province, this paper explores the effects of computer-assisted learning (CAL) on student academic and non-academic outcomes for underserved student populations, and how interactions between the CAL programme and existing classroom resources affect the programme effectiveness. Results show that CAL could have significant beneficial effects on both student academic and non-academic outcomes. However, when the scope of the programme expanded to include a second subject (in this case, math – which was added on top of the Mandarin subject matter that was the focus of the first phase of the programme), some schools had to use regular school hours for CAL sessions. As a result, the phase II programme did not generate any (statistically) significant improvement over the first phase.

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    Journal Article

    Yaojiang Shi, Linxiu Zhang, Chengfang Liu, Natalie Johnson, Scott Rozelle
    China Economic Agricultural Review, 2016

    Purpose

    The purpose of this paper is to describe the trends in residential solid waste collection (RSWC) services in rural China over the past decade and analyze the determinants of these services using nationally representative data.

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    Journal Article

    Yue Ma, Linxiu Zhang, Matthew Boswell
    China Agricultural Economic Review , 2016

    Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to produce a high-quality measure of the nature of healthcare resources available in China’s Township Health Centers (THCs), paying particular attention to equity between high- and low-income areas.

    Design/methodology/approach – This study makes use of data from a nearly nationally representative survey in rural China conducted by the Center for Chinese Agricultural Policy at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in 2011. The samples of towns were selected randomly from 25 counties located in five provinces from different regions of China. Data were collected through questionnaires and direct observation.

    Findings – The THCs located in rich areas have higher levels of human resources than poor areas. THCs in rich areas also have more fixed assets than those in poor areas. In fact, even though the Chinese Ministry of Health mandates that all THCs have certain basic levels of medical equipment and facilities, many THCs in poor areas do not have them. The allocation of mandated equipment is unequal. 

    Practical implications – These findings suggest that Chinas government should pay more attention to THCs located in poor areas, especially in light of new initiatives to improve health care in poor rural areas.

    Originality/value – This is the first nationally representative study to employ rigorous empirics to investigate the extent of inequality in allocation of resources within THCs across China.

    Keywords China, Health, Inequality, Rural development, Medical resources, Township health centers 

    Paper type Research paper 

     

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    Journal Article

    Renfu Luo, Xia Liang, Chengfang Liu, Linxiu Zhang, Ai Yue
    中国当代儿科杂志 (Chinese Contemporary Pediatrics Journal), 2016

    [摘要] 目的 探讨陕南农村地区6~12 月龄婴儿的贫血发生情况及其风险因素。方法 采用问卷调查方法收集陕南农村地区6~12 月龄婴儿的个人和家庭基本情况、喂养行为信息,并测定血红蛋白含量。采用多因素logistic 逐步回归法分析婴儿贫血发生的风险因素。结果 共有1 802 例婴儿及其家庭参与该调查,有效样本

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    Journal Article

    Renfu Luo, Linxiu Zhang, Scott Rozelle
    China Agricultural Economic Review, 2016

    Purpose: The need for a universal rural pension system has been heightened by demographic changes in rural China, including the rapid aging of the nation’s rural population and a dramatic decline in fertility. In response to these changes, China’s Government introduced the New Rural Social Pension Program (NRSPP) in 2009, a voluntary and highly subsidized pension scheme. The purpose of this paper is to assess the participation of rural farmers in the NRSPP. Furthermore, the authors examine whether the NRSPP affects the labor supply of the elderly population in China.

     
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    Journal Article

    Huan Zhou, Shuai Sun, Renfu Luo, Sean Sylvia, Ai Yue, Yaojiang Shi, Linxiu Zhang, Alexis Medina, Scott Rozelle
    AJPH Research, 2016

    Objectives: To test whether text message reminders sent to caregivers will improve the effectiveness of a home micronutrient fortification program in western China.

    Methods: A cluster-randomized controlled trial was carried out in 351 villages in Shaanxi province in 2013-14. We enrolled children aged 6-12 months in target villages. Each village/cluster was randomly assigned into one of three groups: Free Delivery Group (FDG; caregivers received free micronutrient packets); Text Messaging Group (TMG; FDG treatment plus daily text message); and Control Group. We collected information on compliance with treatments and hemoglobin concentrations from all children at baseline and 6-month follow-up. We estimated the intent-to-treat (ITT) effects on compliance and child anemia using a logistic regression model, controlling for infant, caregiver and household characteristics.

    Results: There were 1393 eligible children. We found that assignment to TMG led to an increase full compliance (marginal effect = 0.10, 95% CI = 0.03, 0.16) and decrease in the rate of anemia at endline (marginal effect=-0.07, 95% CI= -0.12, -0.01).

    Conclusions: Text messages improved compliance of caregivers to a home fortification program and children’s nutrition.

     
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