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Title: Subjective wellbeing of internal migrants in Chinese cities
Author: Liu, Yuqi
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2018
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Recent years has seen a surge of interest in what makes a good life for people. Although internal migrants’ socioeconomic disadvantages in Chinese cities have drawn extensive attention from scholars and policymakers in China, insufficient scholarly effort has so far been devoted to understanding the determinants of migrants’ subjective evaluation of wellbeing. This thesis aims to examine the mechanism by which migrants’ socioeconomic disadvantages influence their subjective wellbeing in Chinese cities, with a particular focus on the roles of social comparison, neighbourhood deprivation, and neighbourhood social and built environment. The empirical study is carried out at both nationwide and city levels. At the national level, the data were derived from the 2014 wave of China Labour-force Dynamics Survey. At the city level, the data were drawn from a questionnaire survey and in-depth interviews conducted in Guangzhou in 2015. Five research findings can be derived from the results. First, migrants’ socioeconomic disadvantages in the host city are negatively associated with their subjective wellbeing. Second, there is a mediation effect of social comparison on the relationship between migrants’ actual socioeconomic status and subjective wellbeing. Thrid, neighbourhood built environments have significant impacts on migrants’ subjective wellbeing. Neighbourhood amenities and proximity to public green spaces exert a positive influence on migrants’ subjective wellbeing. Fourth, neighbourhood ties enhance migrants’ subjective wellbeing in a direct manner, but no evidence shows that neighbourhood ties buffer the negative impacts of neighbourhood deprivation. Fifth, the relationship between migrants’ socioeconomic disadvantages and subjective wellbeing in Guangzhou is significantly mediated by neighbourhood deprivation. Specifically, economically disadvantaged migrants are more likely than other migrants to live in impoverished neighbourhoods and thereby tend to have a lower level of subjective wellbeing than other migrants.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available