Spatial characteristics and risk factor identification for land use spatial conflicts in a rapid urbanization region in China

  • De ZhouEmail author
  • Zhulu Lin
  • Siew Hoon Lim


Land use conflict is a complex problem driven by a myriad of risk factors as a result of rapid socioeconomic development and urbanization. Analyzing the spatial characteristics of land use conflict and identifying its risk factors using statistical models will help us to better understand the causes and effects of the land use conflicts for sustainable management of the limited land resources under the pressure of rapid urbanization. In this study, regression models including multiple linear regression (MLR), spatial autoregressive (SAR), and geographically weighted regression (GWR) models were employed to identify risk factors for the land use spatial conflicts in the Urban Agglomeration around Hangzhou Bay (UAHB) of China in the past 25 years. Our results showed that the overall extent and the higher-level land use spatial conflicts were actually on the decline, and their spatial autocorrelation has been weakening in the UAHB. The key risk factors that mainly caused the land use spatial conflicts in the UHAB appeared to be different at the global and local scales. This knowledge should help urban managers and policymakers to be better informed when developing pertinent land use policies at the regional and local levels. This study also underlined the importance of considering spatial autocorrelation and scale effects when identifying the risk factors for land use spatial conflicts. The lessons learned from this particular context can be extended to other areas under rapid urbanization to assess and better manage their land resources for sustainable use.

Graphical abstract


Risk factor identification Land use conflicts Spatial autoregressive model Geographically weighted regression Scale effect Urbanization 


Funding information

This current work is financially supported by the Natural Science Foundation of Zhejiang Province, the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 41301619), and the Doctoral Scientific Fund Project of National Territory Resources Statistics. Zhulu Lin is Adjunct Professor in the Department of Earth Systems Science and Policy of the University of North Dakota.

Supplementary material

10661_2019_7809_MOESM1_ESM.docx (32 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 32.4 kb)


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Land Resources Management, China Institute of Land and Urban GovernanceZhejiang Gongshang UniversityHangzhouChina
  2. 2.Department of Agricultural and Biosystems EngineeringNorth Dakota State UniversityFargoUSA
  3. 3.Department of Agribusiness and Applied EconomicsNorth Dakota State UniversityFargoUSA

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