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China faces pressing environmental and energy challenges. China is by far the largest energy consumer (~25% of world’s total), coal consumer (~50%), automobile market (~27%) and CO2 emitter (~30%). Urban areas are experiencing some of the world’s worst air pollution and traffic congestion problems, which seriously affect the quality of life and sustainability of economic growth. As China addresses these challenges, there will inevitably be global impacts.

CICER researchers are working to understand the causes and consequences of these challenges, as well as the effectiveness of different policy alternatives. Some of our ongoing research projects include:

  1. economic and social impacts of large-scale infrastructure investment, such as the expansion of subway networks in major cities in China and high-speed rail system;
  2. gasoline demand, electric vehicle adoption and the automobile market;
  3. electricity market and reform;
  4. road pricing and policy options to address urban traffic congestion;
  5. interactions of transportation policies and the housing market.


The Morbidity Cost of Air Pollution: Evidence from Consumer Spending in ChinaPanle Jia Barwick, Shanjun Li, Deyu Rao, and Nahim bin Zahur

The Marginal Cost of Traffic Congestion and Road Pricing: Evidence from a Natural Experiment, Shanjun Li, Avralt-od Purevjav and Jun Yang

Agricultural Fires and Cognitive Function: Evidence from Crop Production Cycles, Wangyang Lai, Yanan Li, Xiaohui Tian, and Shanjun Li

Better Lucky Than Rich? Welfare Analysis of Automobile License Allocations in Beijing and ShanghaiShanjun Li (forthcoming, Review of Economic Studies)

Wheels of Fortune: Subway Expansion and Property Values in BeijingShanjun Li, Jun Yang, Ping Qin, Shun Chonabayashi (forthcoming, Journal of Regional Science)

The Price Evolution in China's Automobile MarketShanjun Li, Junji Xiao, Yimin Liu (Journal of Economics and Management Strategy, 24(4), 2015)


Book: Getting Energy Prices Right: From Principle to Practice by Ian W.H. Parry, Dirk Heine, Eliza Lis, and Shanjun Li, published IMF press, 2014