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Lusk Research Seminar

Shanghai's market for overcrowded housing: a comparison of fake (scraped) and real (field study) data. 

November 15, 2017 12:00pm to 1:30pm

We present preliminary findings of our analysis of Shanghai’s hidden informal housing market, the “group rental housing”, 群租房, in which some formal commercial and residential units within high-rises are converted into extremely crowded dormitories. We first scraped a large housing data set from internet ads in February - June 2016. Then in June 2016, upon finding systematic discrepancies in our groundtruthing field verification, we collected original market data through fieldwork responding to the internet ads. We run spatial analysis and hedonic price models on both “fake and real” data sets. We find that the market rationally prices crowding levels ranging from 2-12 people per room. We do not find gender to be a significant determinant of rent price but that women’s apartments tend to be both less crowded and more expensive. We also find that the real housing data reveals an informal housing market that is more expensive, more crowded, and farther from the city center than advertised.



January 6, 2018 - 4:15pm
Pasadena, California

Ceremonies and Celebrations: Textile Treasures from the USC Pacific Asia Museum Collection, drawn from the museum’s extraordinary collection of over 2,700 costumes and textiles from China, Korea, Japan, India, the Himalayas and Southeast Asia. (September 14, 2018 through January 6, 2019)