Our "Finding Solutions" conference focused on the work of individuals, companies, and NGOs addressing some of China’s most pressing challenges. We had a large and diverse audience participate. Videos coming soon!
Access to Elite Education, Wage Premium and Social Mobility: The Truth and Illusion of China's College Entrance Exam
Discussion on China's elite education system and just how much it impacts students.
This study examines the returns to elite education and the implications of elite education on mobility, exploiting an open elite education recruitment system – China’s College Entrance Exam. We conduct annual national surveys of around 40,000 college graduates during 2010-2015 to collect their scores at the college entrance exam, job outcomes, and other individual and family characteristics. Exploiting a discontinuity in elite university eligibility around the cutoff scores, we find elite education increases the monthly wage by around 40%. While elite education eligibility does significantly affect mobility, it does not alter the influence of parental background. We also provide suggestive evidence that the wage premium is more likely to be explained by university-related networks and signaling than that of human capital.
This issue of the newsletter highlights the women who have been called "China's Oprah" and includes our comprehensive calendar of China-focused events and exhibitions across North America.
Please join the USC U.S.-China Institute, the East Asian Studies Center, and the USC School of Cinematic Arts for a screening of the 1993 Chinese film Woman Sesame Oil Maker (香魂女). It tells the story of a woman in a small village who buys a peasant wife for his mentally disabled son after her sesame oil business becomes unexpectedly successful. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with the director, Xie Fei (谢飞).