, Volume 44, Issue 2, pp 265–288

Elderly parent health and the migration decisions of adult children: Evidence from rural China


DOI: 10.1353/dem.2007.0010

Cite this article as:
Giles, J. & Mu, R. Demography (2007) 44: 265. doi:10.1353/dem.2007.0010


Recent research has shown that participation in migrant labor markets has led to substantial increases in income for families in rural China. This article addresses the question of how participation is affected by elderly parent health. We find that younger adults are less likely to work as migrants when a parent is ill. Poor health of an elderly parent has less impact on the probability of employment as a migrant when an adult child has siblings who may be available to provide care. We also highlight the potential importance of including information on nonresident family members when studying how parent illness and elder care requirements influence the labor supply decisions of adult children.

Copyright information

© Population Association of America 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Development Economics Research GroupThe World BankUSA
  2. 2.Department of EconomicsMichigan State UniversityEast Lansing

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