讲座时间：2019年5月16日 上午10:00 - 11:30
讲座嘉宾：Ting Chen (香港浸会大学助理教授）
In the 10th century of Song China (c. 960-1268 AD) on the heels of a commercial revolution, the merchants appealed for their children to be included in the civil exam—the route to officialdom in imperial China. Using a uniquely constructed data set, we show that the variation in commercial tax in 1077 and average number of market towns across the 1,185 Song counties has a significantly positive effect on both the number of jinshi holders and the share of these achievers who came from a non-aristocratic background. To deal with endogeneity, we exploit as natural identifiers the boundary that sharply divided the Tang counties between those which effectively paid taxes and those which did not, and the consequence that this divide may bear upon commercialization, in addition to using this fiscal policy change to instrument commercial tax. To cope with the growing demand for exam preparations, the merchants established many academies and printed many books—the two pertinent channels of the commercial revolution. Our empirical analysis sheds light on why a representative government failed to form in Song China despite having a commercial revolution and confronting warfare like Europe did, and why meritocracy emerged so much earlier in China.
Ting Chen is an assistant professor in the department of economics of Hong Kong Baptist University. Before joining HK Baptist U, She earned B.A. in Sociology from Sun Yat-Sen University (2004-2008), M.A. and M. Phil in Social Science (2008-2011), Ph.D. in Social Science from The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (2011-2016). She worked as a postdoctoral fellow in Bendheim Centre for Finance, Princeton University (2016-2018).
Ting Chen‘s research interest focus on political economics, development economics and economic history. Her dissertation studies government officials’ connection, promotion and land market in China. Ting has made significant contributions on exploring the long term influence of historical civil service exam. Ting’s work has been published on Quarterly Journal of Economics, Journal of Econometrics, Journal of Development Economics, and 经济研究.