Ang Sun

Ang Sun
Renmin University of China | RUC · School of Economics

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13
Publications
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192
Citations

Publications

Publications (13)
Article
Full-text available
This paper explores how a diagnosis of hypertension might affect a person's health-related behaviors. The analysis uses a two-dimensional regression discontinuity design because hypertension is diagnosed when a person's systolic or diastolic blood pressure (SBP or DBP) surpasses a pre-established threshold. We find that those closely above the SBP...
Article
This study considers the experience of China’s one-child policy to examine how fertility restrictions affect economic and social outcomes over a lifetime. Using variations in these penalties across provinces and over time, we find that exposure to stricter fertility restrictions when young leads to higher education levels, more white-collar jobs, d...
Article
This paper investigates the impact of a surging housing market on marital sorting. Our empirical analysis shows that there is increasing assortativeness on original family background in response to housing price appreciation. That is, for husbands, when the down payment doubles, one more year of paternal schooling predicts a marriage in which the f...
Article
In this study, we consider household decision-making on living arrangements and maternal labor supply in extended families with young children. In such a context, decision-making is driven by the concerns that the companionship of children is a household public good and that family members share childcare and related domestic duties. The incentive...
Article
This article examines how inequality in housing assets affects general trust in society. The economic stimulus package carried out in 2008 in China to tackle the global financial crisis increased housing prices and amplified inequality among residents with various initial housing assets. We apply a difference-in-differences strategy to compare citi...
Working Paper
Full-text available
This paper considers how the sex of preschool-aged children can affect their extended families’ living arrangementsand maternal labor supply. Using China Health and Nutrition Survey (CHNS) data, we find that among less-educated mothers, the incidence of co-residing with the paternal grandmother is at least 8.6 percentage points higher if the firstb...
Article
China launched a new rural pension scheme (hereafter NRPS) for rural residents in 2009, now covering almost all counties with over 400 million people enrolled. This implementation of the largest social pension program in the world offers a unique setting for studying the economics of intergenerational relationships during development, given the rap...
Article
This paper investigates the value of on-the-job experience for workers’ long-run career outcomes. We exploit the effects of team relegation in professional soccer by contrasting players on teams just below and just above the cutoff point of relegation. We find that players on teams relegated to a lower division have more match appearances in the sh...
Article
Full-text available
We study the impact of China’s new rural pension program on promoting migration of labor by applying a regression discontinuity analysis to this new pension program. The results reveal a perceptible difference in labor migration among adult children whose parents are just above and below the age of pension eligibility: The adult children with a par...
Article
This paper estimates the effect of China’s pro-women divorce reform on sex-selection behavior within marriages. The 2001 reform liberalized divorce in favor of women and secured women’s property rights after separation. The paper applies a regression discontinuity analysis on the child sex ratio and finds that the likelihood of having a son after a...
Article
China's 2010 census revealed a population of 1.34 billion, 50 percent urban, 13.3 percent above age sixty, and with 118.06 boys born for every 100 girls. In this article, we discuss how gender imbalance, population aging, and their interaction with rapid urbanization have shaped China's reform era development and will strongly shape China's future....
Article
Using a long panel dataset of Chinese farm households covering the period of 1987–2002, this paper studies how major health shocks happening to household adults affect children's school attainments. We find that primary school-age children are the most vulnerable to health shocks, with their chances to enter middle school dropping by 9.9 percentage...

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Project (1)
Project
Pension programs worldwide provide critical financial protection for older people. Social pensions are tax-financed non-contributory cash transfers paid regularly to older people. As of today, 105 countries around the globe have some form of social pension in place at a national level. However, overall pension coverage is limited in most low- and middle-income countries, where high levels of poverty and informal employment mean contributory pensions have limited reach. It remains to be achieved that everyone can access at least an adequate minimum pension in older age. Launched after 2009, China’s new social pension program NRPS, the largest and newest such program in the world with over 500 million enrollees, provides us an important opportunity to understand welfare change of older persons that may generalize and inform policy in the world contexts. I have been serving as the PI on three NIH grants and a Yale Macmillan Center faculty grant and published a set of articles. First, pension programs raise income that can be attributed to a specific person, which helps assess welfare change for older persons after their gaining control of resources. Using both primary data we collected in an impoverished region in China and representative national samples, in 2015 we were among the first to publish research findings that pension income were effective in stimulating consumption of the elderly and promoting their independent living. In 2019, we published three papers finding more healthcare utilization, declined rate of depressive symptoms, and improved cognitive health of the elderly as a result of pension benefits. Highlight Social Science & Medicine paper. Second, pension directed at the elderly could have transformative impact, not just on older people, but on the families they share their lives with. Comparing two primary data we collected from an impoverished region and a developed region in China, my collaboration with Stanford University showed that pension income increased migration rate among adult children and had modest crowd-out effect on intergenerational financial transfers from children to older parents. This is one of the most cited papers in the Journal of the Economics of Ageing. We further published these research findings in 2016 and 2017 on NRPS and intra-family dynamics. Our evidence holds important implications as both policy makers and the public are concerned about if pension roll-out as a formal old age arrangement may offset instrumental support to parents directly provided by children and family, i.e. a primary informal life‐cycle institution. Third, community support has been very important in old age in China. When a formal institution provided by the government like pension serves an overlapping purpose, it may affect informal caring relations and community networks. However, no such evidence exists before our 2019 published study to inform policy. Painstakingly collecting pension roll-out timing for each of the 2,800 counties from official documents and matching with representative national sample, we exploited geographic variation in pension program roll-out to provide the first causal evidence of social pension expansion crowding out altruistic activities (e.g., mutual help to elders in need in the community). Lastly, given the cumulative evidence on positive effects of this largest social pension program, it is puzzling why individual enrollment rate has been low, even for those readily eligible to claim pension benefits. We provide the first evidence on large-scale suboptimal enrollment in the program and offer viable explanations. Suboptimal enrollment takes various forms including failure to switch from the dominated default pension program to NRPS and evidence that families do not make mutually beneficial intra-family decisions. Our initially published evidence in 2019 on suboptimal enrollment is important as it highlights the need for policies to improve enrollment.