Out of “Site”, Out of Mind? Politics of Land Compensation for Chinese Rural Migrants

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Local governments’ failure to provide proper compensation for rural residents’ land rights has been one of the main sources of political conflict in rural China. Previous literature has focused on why local governments use different means to compensate for land-losing rural residents. Yet, the question of who local governments prioritize when providing compensation for dispossessed land rights has not been fully examined. Employing the data from the China Household Income Survey (2013), I show that local states are more likely to provide compensation, either a cash payment or access to social insurance, to land-losing rural residents who stay in the township. Land-losing rural residents who live outside the township, to the contrary, are less likely to be compensated for their land rights by local states. Drawing on the China General Social Survey (2010), I suggest that the disadvantage of out-migrants stems from their lowered levels of political participation. The findings from this article imply that internal migrants in China are discriminated against not only in the destination localities but also in their home localities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)271-301
Number of pages31
JournalStudies In Comparative International Development
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2022


  • China
  • Compensation
  • Land expropriation
  • Migration
  • Social security

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations


Dive into the research topics of 'Out of “Site”, Out of Mind? Politics of Land Compensation for Chinese Rural Migrants'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this