Off the COVID-19 Epicentre: The Impact of Quarantine Controls on Employment, Education and Health in China's Rural Communities


This study documents the COVID-19 disease-control measures enacted in rural China and examines the economic and social impacts of these measures. We conducted two rounds of surveys with 726 randomly selected village informants across seven provinces. Strict disease-control measures have been universally enforced and appear to have been successful in limiting disease transmission in rural communities. The infection rate in our sample was 0.001 per cent, a rate that is near the national average outside of Hubei province. None of the villages reported any COVID-19-related deaths. For a full month during the quarantine, the rate of employment of rural workers was essentially zero. Even after the quarantine measures were lifted, nearly 70 per cent of the villagers still were unable to work owing to workplace closures. Although action has been taken to mitigate the potential negative effects, these disease-control measures might have accelerated the inequality between rural and urban households in China., 摘要本文记录了中国为控制新冠病毒在农村地区实施的防疫措施,并研究防疫措施对农村经济社会的影响。对除湖北省之外的七个省随机采样抽取的 726 个村进行两轮的电话访谈发现,样本农村地区均采取了严格的防疫措施,新冠病毒在样本地区的传播情况得到有效控制。样本农村地区的新冠感染率约仅为 0.001%,和全国除湖北省之外的平均感染率基本一致。样本地区没有发现因新冠感染去世的病例。研究同时发现,防疫措施对农村社会经济造成潜在负面影响。在严格防疫措施实施的近一个月期间,农村劳动力几乎无法外出就业。即使在防疫措施解除之后,仍有约 70% 的农村劳动力因为工作或打工的地方停工不能就业。虽然各级政府采取了诸多举措降低防疫措施对农村就业、教育和医疗的影响,但是防疫措施可能进一步拉大城乡间的发展差距。

The China Quarterly