GEOGRAPHICAL RESEARCH ›› 2020, Vol. 39 ›› Issue (4): 805-821.doi: 10.11821/dlyj020190257

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The process and mechanism of regional land use transition guided by policy: A case study of Northeast China

TIAN Junfeng1, WANG Binyan2, CHENG Lisha2, WANG Shijun2()   

  1. 1.College of Earth Science, Jilin University, Changchun 130061, China
    2.School of Geography Sciences, Northeast Normal University, Changchun 130024, China
  • Received:2019-04-08 Revised:2019-10-16 Online:2020-04-20 Published:2020-06-24
  • Contact: WANG Shijun


In view of the typical regional development strategic areas such as Northeast China and West China, this paper constructs a policy-led interpretation framework for regional land use transition. Based on the empirical study of land use transition process in Northeast China from 1995 to 2015, this paper further explores and explains the regional land use transition mechanism guided by policy. The results show that: (1) There are two main paths for the regional land use transition guided by policy, namely, the socio-ecological feedback path under the policy guidance and the social-economic change path under the policy influence. Land scarcity and land intensification, ecological environment protection and policy intervention, regional function orientation and land use, economic modernization and urbanization, market and globalization, population growth and migration are the main factors leading to regional land use transition guided by policy. (2) From 1995 to 2015, the socio-economic development of Northeast China showed a process of transition and land use transition took place at the same time. The transition of regional land use is mainly manifested in the change of regional land quantity structure, the conversion relationship and intensity among different types of land, and the change of spatial structure of land use. (3) Empirical study on land use transition in Northeast China shows that the policy-led regional land use transition is the result of the comprehensive effect of the social-ecological feedback path under the policy guidance and the social-economic change path under the policy influence. There is a coupling and antagonistic process between the two paths. The former path affects the process of regional land use transition by influencing the supply of different types of land. The government's understanding of the importance of different resources determines the direction of its policy role and changes the land supply. The socio-ecological feedback under the guidance of policies determines the direction of regional land use transition. The latter path comes from the changes of regional socio-economic development. In this process, economic modernization, population growth and migration, market and globalization bring about changes in regional land use demand. Regional industrial development policy and urbanization policy affect the process of land use transition by changing the direction of regional development and accelerating the process of regional development. The socio-economic change under the influence of policies determines the speed and intensity of regional land use transition. The regional function orientation, as well as economic modernization and urbanization, are the two core factors leading to the regional land use transition under the policy guidance. We also have some other findings about the regional land use transition guided by policies. For example, the implementation of some inclination policies led to the unsustainable use of regional land. Therefore, how to improve the policy system and realize the transition of land use to sustainable development through policy guidance and policy coordination should be the focus of future research.

Key words: land use, transition, mechanism, policy, Northeast China