Impact of E-commerce Development on Income Inequality: Evidence from rural China based on cross-county panel data
Xinxin Ma and
Discussion papers from Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI)
Information and communications technology (ICT) is rapidly developing worldwide. Some studies argue that ICT increases income inequality in developed countries; however, evidence on the relationship between progress in ICT and income inequality in developing countries is scarce. Using an original cross-county panel data from 2011 to 2018, we investigated the impact of e-commerce development on income inequality in rural China while considering endogeneity issues. We found that the effect of e-commerce on income inequality differed by region: e-commerce development could expand income inequality in developed counties, while reducing it in less-developed ones; the total effect of e-commerce on the income inequality was insignificant. Additionally, this effect was greater in counties with a higher level of agricultural modernization. Furthermore, the decomposition results indicated that differences in e-commerce accessibility and income return of e-commerce usage contributed to widening the income inequality between developed and less-developed rural counties.
Pages: 38 pages
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eti:dpaper:23044
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