Are Chinese workers compensated for occupational risk?

Haining Wang, Zhiming Cheng, Russell Leigh Smyth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study contributes to an important, but under-researched, topic on China by empirically examining the theory of compensating wage differentials for occupational risks in urban labour markets. Drawing on two datasets – one national for all workers and one from the Pearl River Delta for migrant workers – we examine the relationship between wages and occupational risks, and estimate the risk premium for health hazards. The results show that having risky jobs, especially those associated with dust, has a significant negative effect on hourly wages. The negative risk premium accounts for approximately 10% of all workers’ hourly wage in safe jobs using the national dataset and 1.8% of migrant workers’ hourly wage in safe jobs in the Pearl River Delta. With the national data, males, migrant workers and manual workers incur a wage penalty for exposure to dust, chemical substances, biological hazards and other health hazards. Only urban locals earn a significantly positive wage premium for exposure to chemical substances. We offer several explanations for the negative wage premium in the context of China’s urban labour market.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111 - 130
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Industrial Relations
Volume58
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Cite this

Wang, Haining ; Cheng, Zhiming ; Smyth, Russell Leigh. / Are Chinese workers compensated for occupational risk?. In: Journal of Industrial Relations. 2016 ; Vol. 58, No. 1. pp. 111 - 130.
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Are Chinese workers compensated for occupational risk? / Wang, Haining; Cheng, Zhiming; Smyth, Russell Leigh.

In: Journal of Industrial Relations, Vol. 58, No. 1, 2016, p. 111 - 130.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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