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Deciphering the recent trend of inter-provincial spending inequality in China's compulsory education: 1993-2008

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Abstract:

Among alternative dimensions of educational inequity issues waiting to be addressed, regional inequity in China is striking and hardly tolerable by the public. Given the fact that distributive equity in resources is a key determinant of equity in educational opportunities in developing countries, and given that a general picture of rising national per-student spending over the years may hide possibly severe inequities among sub units, it is necessary to decode the most recent trend of unbalanced compulsory educational expenditure among provinces in China and to evaluate the impact of the central and provincial governments’ equalization policies on reducing provincial spending disparities.

In this paper, based on official data, I will provide a systematic empirical estimation and analysis of interprovincial per-student spending inequalities in China’s compulsory education by using appropriate inequality measures (Gini and Theil index and Gini decomposition, among others). Key questions include: (a) what is the trend and pattern of inter-provincial and inter-regional financing inequality from 1993 to 2008? (b) Does the identified between-province inequality decrease at certain points? Could it be attributed to the central governments’ equalizing policies and efforts?

All inequality measures show consistently large disparities among provinces and among regions. The Gini coefficient has generally exhibited an increased trend over these years, from 0.2 to 0.3. Indicated by per-student total spending, per-student recurrent spending and per-student non-personnel spending, there is a slight drop of spending inequality at the primary education level around the year 2002 and a larger reduction from 2005 and on, while there are three turning points in the trend of lower-secondary spending disparity among provinces. I further present a more careful evaluation for the trends and possible policy implications via linking them to the Reform on Tax and Administrative Charges (2001), as well the New Mechanism for Financing Rural Compulsory Education (2006).
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Name: 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society
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http://www.cies.us


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p486221_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Gong, Xin. "Deciphering the recent trend of inter-provincial spending inequality in China's compulsory education: 1993-2008" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Fairmont Le Reine Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, May 01, 2011 <Not Available>. 2014-11-26 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p486221_index.html>

APA Citation:

Gong, X. , 2011-05-01 "Deciphering the recent trend of inter-provincial spending inequality in China's compulsory education: 1993-2008" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Fairmont Le Reine Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec, Canada <Not Available>. 2014-11-26 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p486221_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: Among alternative dimensions of educational inequity issues waiting to be addressed, regional inequity in China is striking and hardly tolerable by the public. Given the fact that distributive equity in resources is a key determinant of equity in educational opportunities in developing countries, and given that a general picture of rising national per-student spending over the years may hide possibly severe inequities among sub units, it is necessary to decode the most recent trend of unbalanced compulsory educational expenditure among provinces in China and to evaluate the impact of the central and provincial governments’ equalization policies on reducing provincial spending disparities.

In this paper, based on official data, I will provide a systematic empirical estimation and analysis of interprovincial per-student spending inequalities in China’s compulsory education by using appropriate inequality measures (Gini and Theil index and Gini decomposition, among others). Key questions include: (a) what is the trend and pattern of inter-provincial and inter-regional financing inequality from 1993 to 2008? (b) Does the identified between-province inequality decrease at certain points? Could it be attributed to the central governments’ equalizing policies and efforts?

All inequality measures show consistently large disparities among provinces and among regions. The Gini coefficient has generally exhibited an increased trend over these years, from 0.2 to 0.3. Indicated by per-student total spending, per-student recurrent spending and per-student non-personnel spending, there is a slight drop of spending inequality at the primary education level around the year 2002 and a larger reduction from 2005 and on, while there are three turning points in the trend of lower-secondary spending disparity among provinces. I further present a more careful evaluation for the trends and possible policy implications via linking them to the Reform on Tax and Administrative Charges (2001), as well the New Mechanism for Financing Rural Compulsory Education (2006).


Similar Titles:
Sorting and inequality in post-compulsory education in China

Comparative Education in Hong Kong, Taiwan and Mainland China: Recent Trends and Prospects

Inter-county Inequalities in the Financing of China's Compulsory Education: A Temporal-Spatial Analysis in 1995-2006


 
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