This article can be found in the Special Issue of the Journal of Urban Affairs regarding China’s new urban realities and development policies.
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Linking migrant enclave residence to employment in urban China: The case of Shanghai, by Cathy Yang Liu, Jie Chen & Huiping Li
With rapid economic restructuring, large-scale population migration, and market-oriented housing commercialization, China’s urban residents have experienced increasing segregation in both residential spaces and workplaces. Using the sixth census (year 2010) data with detailed geographic information for Shanghai, we document the residential patterns of local residents and migrants and identify the clustered enclaves of migrant workers. The results indicate that rural migrants in Shanghai feature a much higher level of residential clustering than do urban locals and urban migrants, with considerable concentration in the outskirts of the city. In investigating how the neighborhood contexts are associated with individuals’ employment outcomes, we find that migrant enclave residence is associated with positive employment outcomes for rural migrants, suggesting that the strong social networks that exist in these neighborhoods help them secure jobs. This positive social network effect is not shared by urban migrants or urban natives and is most evident among female migrant workers and those who live in locations with relatively low job densities.