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How Commuting Time Affects Employees’ Income in China’s Urbanization Process

Jiajia Wei, Qiyan Wang and Wang Gao ()
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Jiajia Wei: School of Mathematics and Statistics, Beijing Technology and Business University, Beijing 102488, China
Qiyan Wang: Leisure Economy Research Center, Renmin University of China, Beijing 100872, China
Wang Gao: School of Finance, Hebei University of Economics and Business, Shijiazhuang 050062, China

Sustainability, 2022, vol. 14, issue 23, 1-18

Abstract: With the deepening of China’s urbanization, the commuting time of employees is increasing. Much evidence in Western developed countries supports the positive relationship between commuting time and income, but the relationship has not been verified in China. To determine whether the relationship is in effect in China, this paper constructs a theoretical model. From the perspective of long-term equilibrium analysis, the best choice for individuals is a hard-work strategy. The increase in long-term commuting time will eventually lead to individuals working harder, thus increasing personal income. The OP model established based on the survey data of Beijing residents’ time allocation in 2011, 2016, and 2021 also verified the positive impact of commuting time on employee income, which is more significant for groups with longer commuting time and shorter leisure time. The innovation of this paper has three parts. First, the long-term dynamic decision-making game was introduced into the personal choice model to reveal the long-term impact of commuting on income. Second, we verified the positive impact of commuting time on income in China. Third, we discussed the policy implications of increasing commuting time for improving urban operation efficiency in China’s urbanization process. Finally, it is suggested that the government should reasonably plan the urban functional structure and increase the construction of public transport in infrastructure, and enterprises should explore the staggered commuting system.

Keywords: commuting time; leisure time; income; urbanization; urban efficiency (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O13 Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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