GEOGRAPHICAL RESEARCH ›› 2018, Vol. 37 ›› Issue (12): 2411-2419.doi: 10.11821/dlyj201812004

• Commemorative Pages for Professor Penghua • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Leading the research innovation of Danxia landform and tourism geography by synthetic thinking: The geographical thoughts and academic contribution of Peng Hua

Shixiu WENG1(), Luobin YAN2, Hua WANG3()   

  1. 1. School of Geography and Planning, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China
    2. School of Geography, Southwest University, Chongqing 400715, China
    3. School of Management, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510632, China
  • Received:2018-09-08 Revised:2018-10-08 Online:2018-12-20 Published:2018-12-20
  • About author:

    Author: Shi Zhenqin (1988-), PhD, specialized in regional development and land space management in mountain areas. E-mail:

    *Corresponding author: Deng Wei (1957-), Professor, specialized in mountain environment and regional development.



Peng Hua was a professor at Sun Yat-sen University who was long devoted to Danxia Landform research and geographic tourism. In retrospect, Peng's achievements can be introduced from three aspects. First, through seeking overseas collaboration and applying for nomination of world natural heritage sites, he made a great practical contribution in promoting Danxia Landform as an internationally known heritage. Second, concerning his academic contribution, Peng produced a wealth of nuanced insights in multiple aspects of Danxia Landform, including, but by no means confined to, its typology and evolution and the distribution of red beds. Equally, he systematically compared Danxia landform with many others, both in and outside China. Additionally, in recent years, he made benchmark progress by successfully extending the scope of research on red beds, including its underground and above ground surfaces, such as geological structure, rock properties, geomorphological evolution, natural hazards, soil erosion, land degradation, and its socioeconomic development. Also, Peng Hua initiated the national survey of Danxia Landform and constructed its data platform. Third, in addition to research on Danxia Landform, he devised multiple significant concepts in the fields of tourism planning, tourism culture, urban tourism and regional tourism development. Particularly, the concept of 'Broad Tourism', which was proposed by Peng Hua, has had a massive impact on the academic community of Chinese tourism studies. Based on this concept, he proposed a number of innovative theories and research methods, such as the system and mechanism of tourism, development stages of tourism destinations, integration of tourism exploitation and city construction, market classification analysis, and correspondence analysis of products and demands. To a considerable extent, there is no exaggeration in arguing that these theories provide a bird's-eye view of the tourism development, clarify the differences and inter-connections among the direct, involved, and supportive systems and mobilize the role of tourism in regional development. All in all, Peng's achievements reflect his openness, overall awareness, and optimal portfolio, which helps researchers keep a comprehensive view in dealing with more subtle research of geography.

Key words: Peng Hua, geographical thoughts, academic contribution, red beds and Danxia Landform, tourism geography