A Time-Series Cross-Sectional Analysis of Exposure to Competition and Sense of Fairness in Urban China
The data on sense of fairness are drawn from urban sample of Chinese General Social Survey (CGSS) 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013, nationally representative social surveys. Sense of fairness is measured as to what extent one agrees that the society is fair. By coding competition index to the pooled datasets, I obtain three main findings. 1) The severity of competition one experiences in school is likely to exert an undermining effect on sense of fairness, which is still effective when one leaves school. 2) This undermining effect is contingent on economic development, with a more explicit effect in less developed areas while insignificantly in developed areas. 3) Self-rated class ratings is positively related to sense of fairness due to self-interest explanation, yet competition has little effect on this relationship. This study emphasizes the role of competition as a determinant of social mentality in transitional China that should be explored in future research.