Zhong Zhao is an associate dean and a professor of economics at the School of Labor and Human Resources, Renmin University of China, and a member of the university academic committee. He is an associate editor of the Journal of Population Economics. He holds a bachelor's degree in economics from the Renmin University of China and a doctorate degree in economics from the Johns Hopkins University. Before joined the Renmin University of China, he had worked for IZA as a Senior Research Associate. He also held faculty position at Peking University. His main areas of interest are labor economics, applied microeconometrics, social program evaluation and economy of China. His recent research topics on China include earnings instability and inequality, rural-urban disparity, rural-urban migration, labor relations, and health and health care reform in China. He has published in both international and Chinese economics journals such as Review of Economics and Statistics, Review of Income and Wealth, Journal of the Royal Statistical Society (Series A) , Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Economics Letters, Journal of Population Economics, and Journal of Comparative Economics. He is a recipient of the 2013 Kuznets Prize of the Journal of Population Economics.

He continues to maintain close ties to IZA as a Research Fellow after leaving the institute in December 2008.



IZA Discussion Paper No. 11074
Liang Zheng, Zhong Zhao
published: China Economic Review, 2017, 46, 228-248 [Details & Download]

Since Chinese government initiated economic reform in the late 1970s, entrepreneurship and private sectors have emerged gradually and played an increasingly important role in promoting economic growth. However, entrepreneurship is distributed unevenly in China. Using micro data from 2008 economic census and 2005 population census, this paper explains spatial clusters...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 11029
Yaqin Su, Petros Tesfazion, Zhong Zhao
published in: China Economic Review, 2018, 47, 142-155 [Details & Download]

Using a representative sample of rural migrants in cities, this paper investigates where the migrants in urban China come from, paying close attention to intra-provincial vs. inter-provincial migrants, and examining the differences in their personal attributes. We find that migrants who have come within the province differ significantly from those...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 10424
published in: China Economic Review, 2017, 42, 118-144 [Details & Download]

The paper studies the levels and changes in wage inequality among Chinese rural-urban migrants during 2002-2007. Using data from two waves of national household surveys, we find that wage inequality among migrants decreased significantly between 2002 and 2007. Our analysis on the wage distribution further shows that the high-wage migrants...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 10295
Liqiu Zhao, Fei Wang, Zhong Zhao

This paper exploits a quasi-natural experiment – the U.S. granting of Permanent Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) to China after China's accession to the World Trade Organization – to examine whether trade liberalization affects the incidence of child labor in China. PNTR permanently set U.S. duties on Chinese imports at low...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 9976
Can Tang, Liqiu Zhao, Zhong Zhao
published online in: China Economic Review, 2016, [Details & Download]

We present the first systematic study on child labor in China. Child labor is not a negligible social phenomenon in China; about 7.74% of children aged from 10 to 15 were working in 2010, and they worked for 6.75 hours per day on average, and spent 6.42 hours less per...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 9746
Fei Wang, Liqiu Zhao, Zhong Zhao
revised version published in: Journal of Population Economics, 2017, 30(1), 31-68 [Details & Download]

China initiated its family planning policy in 1962 and one-child policy in 1980 and allows all couples to have two children as of 1st January, 2016. This paper systematically examines the labor market consequences of China's family planning policies. First, we briefly review the major historical evolution of China's family...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 9643

We examine the causal impact of China's higher education expansion on labor market outcomes for young college graduates using China's 2005 1% Population Sample Survey. Exploiting variation in the expansion of university spots across provinces and high school cohorts and applying a difference-in-differences model, we find that the expansion of...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 9621
Lingguo Cheng, Hong Liu, Ye Zhang, Zhong Zhao
published in: Journal of Comparative Economics, 2018, 46, 53-77 [Details & Download]

This paper estimates the causal effect of income on health outcomes of the elderly and investigates underlying mechanisms by exploiting an income change induced by the launch of China's New Rural Pension scheme (NRPS). Using this policy experiment, we address the endogeneity of pension income by applying a fixed-effect model...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 9397
Published in: Social Indicators Research Vol. 132(1), 117-136 [Details & Download]

In general, the happiness literature has paid little attention to the relationship between physical appearance and well-being. In this paper, we examine the link between weight, height and well-being for three distinct samples in China given that attractiveness effects likely vary greatly across sociocultural contexts. As China has recently undergone...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 9350
Xiang Ao, Dawei Jiang, Zhong Zhao
published in: China Economic Review, 2016, 37, 126–139 [Details & Download]

Since the reform and opening up in 1978, China has begun a period of rapid industrialization and urbanization. Along with an increasing number of rural people migrating to urban area for jobs, there are a considerable number of elderly parents left behind in the rural area. The impact of migration...