China’s Invisible Crisis: How the Urban-Rural Human Capital Divide Threatens China’s Growth and Stability

April 5, 2019 12:15 pm - 1:45 pm


Columbia School of Social Work, Room C03: 1255 Amsterdam Avenue, New York, NY 10027

Event Organizer

China Center for Social Policy


About the Event

Scott Rozelle

While China’s cities have succeeded beyond anyone’s wildest imagination, the overlooked rural population—who make up the vast majority of the population—is being left behind. Leading China scholar Dr. Scott Rozelle (bio) has spent over four decades studying, working, and collecting data in rural communities across China. In his forthcoming book with Natalie Johnson, China’s Invisible Crisis: The Growing Urban-Rural Divide and What It Means for the World Economy (due out in June), he says that hundreds of millions of people could soon be without stable work, with grave potential costs in China and the wider world. He attributes this “invisible crisis” to the failure of China’s rural education policy. Without better skills and education, the country risks corruption, organized crime and economic stagnation. And as unskilled workers lose their jobs and are unable to find new ones, China may come to rely far more on militaristic nationalism in order to stave off social unrest.

Qin Gao

The discussion will be moderated by Dr. Qin Gao (bio), Director of the China Center for Social Policy.

This event is part of the 2018-2019 Policy and Society in Contemporary China Lecture Series, cosponsored by the China Center for Social Policy and Weatherhead East Asian Institute, and supported by the School of Social Work, the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation, and Columbia Global Centers | Beijing.

About the Speaker

Scott Rozelle holds the Helen Farnsworth Endowed Professorship at Stanford University and is a senior fellow and professor in the Freeman Spogli Institute (FSI) for International Studies. His research focuses on the economics of poverty—with an emphasis on the economics of education and health. Dr. Rozelle is the co-director of the Rural Education Action Project (REAP) and is an adjunct professor in 8 Chinese universities. In 2008, he was awarded the Friendship Award—the highest honor that can be endowed on a foreign citizen—by Premiere Wen Jiabao.

Continuing Education Information

For a fee of $37.50, NYS-, NJ- and CT-licensed social workers and NYS licensed mental health counselors* are eligible to receive 1.5 contact hours. Click on the register link for more information.

Livestream Information

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