GEOGRAPHICAL RESEARCH ›› 2007, Vol. 26 ›› Issue (6): 1197-1208.doi: 10.11821/yj2007060014

• Urban and Rural Studies • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Multi-level urbanization: An integrative viewpoint of analyzing regional development and its empirical study

FENG Jian1, LIU Yu2, WANG Yong-hai3   

  1. 1. College of Urban and Environmental Sciences, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China;
    2. Institute of Regional and Urban Economics, Renmin University of China, Beijing 100872, China;
    3. College of Geographical Science and Planning, Zhongshan University, Guangzhou 510275, China
  • Received:2007-05-20 Revised:2007-09-28 Online:2007-11-25 Published:2007-11-25
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Multi-level urbanization provides us a viewpoint or method to analyze the characteristics and mechanisms of regional development and urban-rural development in China in the transitional period. Analysis of multi-level urbanization lays emphasis on disassembling the process of regional urbanization with different spatial levels, in order to indicate the characteristics and mechanisms of the development of urbanization clearly. Taking Zibo city of Shandong province as an example, the paper provides a theoretical framework of the analysis of multi-level urbanization, including urbanization of trans-city and trans-municipality, that of group cities, that of this locality, and that of local communities. With the framework of multi-level urbanization, it is easy to find out the features of the development of Zibo's urbanization in the transitional period. The authors find that the relationship of consanguinity, location and business, the gap of economic development, the effect of scale, the attraction of county seat, and the forces from bottom to top constitute the driving forces of the development of multi-level urbanization in Zibo. Based on the experience of Zibo, the authors put forward the model of the development of multi-level urbanization, and think that with the development of a market economy in China in the transitional period, we should emphasize the pluralistic concept and the multi-levels of the development of urbanization, for it is more and more difficult to generalize the features of regional urbanization with a single model in the newest period.

Key words: urbanization, multi-level urbanization, group city, from bottom to top, Zibo