The Value of Power in China:
How Do Party Membership and Social Networks Affect Pay in Different Ownership Sectors?

Shuang LI
Ming LU
Hiroshi Sato

November 2008


Party membership and social networks, as two forms of nonmarket power, have significant effects on personal income. Do the effects vary across different ownership sectors (suoyouzhi xingzhi)? Using a nationally representative survey of urban households (China Household Income Project surveys in 1995 and 2002), we find that (1) party membership can significantly increase personal income, but this effect does not significantly differ between different ownership sectors or between the years 1995 and 2002 and (2) social networks are insignificant in State-Owned Enterprises (SOEs), while they contribute significantly to personal income in non-SOE sectors.

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