Chinese regional productivity and urbanization: a county-level study in 2007-2010

Jin, F. and Zhang, Q. (2015) Chinese regional productivity and urbanization: a county-level study in 2007-2010. Journal of Chinese Economic and Foreign Trade Studies, 8(2), pp. 82-105. (doi:10.1108/JCEFTS-11-2014-0024)

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Purpose: – This study aims to analyze the total factor productivity (TFP) performance of Chinese counties and cities over the period from 2007 to 2010. Chinese regional and urban–rural TFP performance are investigated by using county-level data, and the impact of the urbanization policy on TFP is discussed. Design/methodology/approach: – The data envelopment analysis (DEA)-Malmquist technique and Kumbhakar–Sun’s semi-parametric model are used for TFP change measurement and comparison. The county-level TFP performances are summarized and studied by statistical methods. Their spatial distribution is exhibited in a geographical thematic map. Findings – The county-level analysis proves that China underwent a large-scale TFP decline over the period from 2007 to 2010. Statistically speaking, cities’ TFP growth is more positive than counties’; however, different provinces also have their regional characteristics. In addition, the Chinese Hukou (household registration) institution divides Chinese urbanization into halves, which have the opposite correlation on TFP growth. Research limitations/implications – Because the collection of county-level data is enormous and costly, this study only focuses on a very short period (2007-2010) with estimated data. This TFP change analysis is limited to the short-term phenomenon around the 2008 international financial crisis. Practical implications – This study provides a visual spatial distribution for county-level TFP change in China over the period 2007-2010. Results of the analysis demonstrate that the Chinese Hukou system is among the policy factors that can influence productivity in the course of urbanization. Originality/value: – The achievement of the first nationwide county-level TFP change study for economic growth in China is innovative. This study provides a unique perspective for understanding productivity performance at the regional level over the period investigated, which provides invaluable data for investigating the impact of urbanization and the rural–urban gap on TFP growth.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Jin, Dr Fei
Authors: Jin, F., and Zhang, Q.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Engineering > Infrastructure and Environment
Journal Name:Journal of Chinese Economic and Foreign Trade Studies
ISSN (Online):1754-4416

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