In recent years, the topic of equality between men and women has caused hot discussion. Concerning these topics, it is more because the gender ratio in China’s education sector is being reversed, and the average education level of women has exceeded that of men. The dominance of women in the education is a global phenomenon. In the West, the mainstream view believes that this phenomenon stems from the fact that women’s educational investment can get higher returns in the labor market and the marriage market. However, this explanation neglects the role of real estate which is an important family asset. Especially in China, the sharp rise in housing prices and the rise in the proportion of female in colleges and universities are consistent in time. Therefore, the analysis of women’s educational dominance from the perspective of family housing assets is of great significance for understanding the family education investment decision-making and behavior. As for the relationship between housing assets and family education investment, previous literature has analyzed it from the perspective of " borrowing constraints”. However, it is very rare for parents to mortgage their houses to commercial banks or other financial institutions to obtain education loans in China. Therefore, it is impossible that the rise of housing prices influences the educational investment of Chinese families and women’s educational dominance by the channel of relaxing the family’s " borrowing constraints”. This paper argues that the real reason for women’s educational dominance in China is the potential " wealth effect” of the rise of housing prices on children’s educational expenditure; however, the existence of " bequest motives” infamilies with boys which inhibits the " wealth effect” of housing, makes the rise of housing prices only increase the educational expenditure of families with only girls, and ultimately leads to women’s dominance in the field of education. In order to verify the above explanation, this paper uses the two-stage panel data of the " China Family Finance Survey” to analyze the differential impact of the rise of housing prices on children’s educational expenditure in families with only girls and families with boys. This study finds that: First, for families with only girls, the rise in housing prices will promote the educational expenditure to the offspring through the " wealth effect”. Second, the existence of " bequest motives” makes giving birth to boys restrain the " wealth effect” of housing on the educational expenditure of the offspring. The appreciation of the family housing could not significantly increase the educational expenditure of families with boys, which makes the female offspring receive more educational investment. This paper has the following theoretical and practical significance: First, it is the first analysis for the reason of women’s dominance in education from the perspective of the rise of housing prices and effectively extends the relevant theoretical explanations. Second, unlike the existing literature which emphasizes the role of borrowing constraints, this paper analyzes the influence of the rise of housing prices on children’s educational expenditure by the channel of " wealth effect”, and deepens the understanding of the original theory. Third, it analyzes the differential impact and mechanism of rising house prices on the educational expenditure of families with only girls and families with boys, and provides constructive suggestions for the formulation and revision of relevant policies.
Women’s Dominance in Education: An Analysis of the Influence of Housing Price Increase on Children’s Educational Expenditure
Journal of Finance and Economics Vol. 45, Issue 04, pp. 54 - 67,82 (2019) DOI:10.16538/j.cnki.jfe.2019.04.005
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Cite this article
Geng Feng, Qin Xuezheng. Women’s Dominance in Education: An Analysis of the Influence of Housing Price Increase on Children’s Educational Expenditure[J]. Journal of Finance and Economics, 2019, 45(4): 54-67.