Gansu Survey of Children and Families Papers

Document Type

Journal Article

Date of this Version



Reprinted from Chinese Sociological Review 47, no. 2 (2015): 177-201.
Publisher URL:


Statistics suggest that young men and women in China migrate at almost equal numbers, but we know less about gender differences in the decision to migrate. We examine the factors associated with migration decisions and the rationales given by young migrants. Our results are consistent with previous figures and show no overall gender differences in susceptibility to migration. However, we find that a sibship structure operates differently on the decisions of boys and girls. We also found that young men were more likely to report that they had moved for purposes of starting a business or personal development than young women, while young women were more likely to report that they had moved to support the tuition of a family member. We argue that, despite the gender parity of the migrant youth population, gender shapes migration decisions by affecting the family circumstances and migration motivations of men and women.


migration, gender, youth, migration rationale, personal development



Date Posted: 14 June 2013

This document has been peer reviewed.