The settlement of rural migrants in urban China: some of the migrants are not ‘floating’ anymore

Kenneth Roberts, Southwestern University
Rachel Connelly, Bowdoin College
Zhenzhen Zheng, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences

This paper investigates the issue of permanent settlement of rural migrants in Chinese cities. We argue that, in addition to length of stay, self employment, coresidence with family members, a lower percent of income remitted back to the village, and current hukou status are all indicators of settlement. We explore each of these indicators using the 2001 Chinese Urban Labor Survey (CULS). Beyond presenting descriptive analysis of the settlement process, the paper offers a multivariate analysis of determinants of three indicators of settlement: length of stay, coresidence with one’s spouse, and coresidence with one’s children. Initial results indicate that age at migration, being currently married, and being self employed are strong predictors of length of stay. Being self employed is also a strong predictor of having one’s spouse in the city, while only for married women is being self employed a predictor of having one’s children in the city.

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Presented in Session 134: Internal migration and urbanization: processes and patterns (2)