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Date of Award

Spring 2012

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science



First Advisor

James G. Wen


China has attained a miraculous two digit economic growth in the last three decades. Contributing to this growth was an inflow of tides of migrant workers, amounting to more than 160 million today, from countryside to cities. However, deprived of economic opportunities, segregated from urban population socially and spatially, and denied of urban identity, these migrant workers are not fully integrated into cites: their urbanization remains shallow. Since shallow urbanization have negative impacts on urban agglomeration, absorption of agricultural surplus labor, and equality in terms of income distribution and opportunities across citizens, it may slow down China's economic growth and should be rectified in timely manner. Through empirical studies with city level data from China, the paper finds the household registration system and the restrictive land policy to be responsible for the shallow urbanization, and proposes reforms on the two policies so as to deepen and accelerate urbanization and to maintain a healthy and sustainable growth of China.


Senior thesis completed at Trinity College for the degree of Bachelor of Science in Economics. Accessible to members of the Trinity community only.