Li to lecture on Chinese anti-poverty program

Josefina Li, adjunct economics faculty at Bemidji State University, will deliver an Honors Council Lecture on a program combining efforts to combat mass poverty and provide for ecological renewal in the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region in northwest China.

Li’s presentation, “Ningxia’s Ecological Immigration Program: An Embryonic Job Guarantee Program,” will be held at 7 p.m. Dec. 4 in Hagg-Sauer Hall 112 on the Bemidji State campus. Honors Council Lectures are open to the public free of charge.

Li will discuss the Ningxia Ecological Immigration Program (NEIP) within the southern part of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region of northwest China. The program has been implemented in four phases over a nearly 30-year period from the 1980s to the present. Each successive phase of the program has attempted to combat mass poverty and provide ecological renewal while correcting for unintended consequences experienced during previous phases.

While the social, economic and environmental problems of the region may be exclusive to China, the program has some similarities with Job Guarantee green jobs programs, which allows scholars to assess the viability of Job Guarantee programs. Job Guarantee scholars can therefore benefit from the the experiences of the NEIP program, while the Chinese can likewise learn from key aspects of the Job Guarantee literature.

Li teaches economics at Bemidji State University. She is a doctoral candidate at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. She also is a research assistant with the Center for Full Employment and Price Stability, where she regularly contributes to “The State of Black Kansas City.” Her research interests include ecological economics and history of economic thought.

Li’s lecture is based on the paper “Ningxia’s Ecological Immigration Program: An Embryonic Employer of Last Resort Program,” which will be published in the forthcoming book “Employment Guarantee Schemes.”

The Honors Council Lecture Series is hosted by the Bemidji State University Honors Council. The council is the advisory group to the honors program comprised of 12 faculty members from each of the University’s colleges. Student representatives also are elected to the council by their cohorts for one-year terms.

For more information about the Honors Council Lecture Series, please contact the honors program at (218) 755-3984.