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Regional Differences in Urbanization: A Case Study of Urban Agglomerations in Northwestern China

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China’s Urbanization and Socioeconomic Impact

Abstract

Since China’s economic reform and the open-door policy launched almost 40 years ago, urbanization in China has made remarkable achievements, but at the same time, huge regional differences have emerged. In this chapter, we identify three regions (eastern, central and western areas) in China based on four indicators of urbanization (regional development, urban-rural links, urban spatial distributions and urban function partitions). Then we conduct a case study of the northwestern urban agglomerations as a typical case of urbanization in the Western region. Using the entropy method, we develop a composite index of urbanization based on four subsystems (population, economy, society and land), which measures urbanization levels of five northwestern urban agglomerations during 2005–2014. Using clustering analysis and standard deviation, we analyze the spatial gaps in urban agglomerations and their dynamic evolution. The findings are as follows: (a) There are significant and persistent regional differences in urbanization (both between areas and within areas); (b) Urbanization in northwestern regions is largely influenced by population and land as well as economic and social factors; and (c) Government regional development strategies and urban policies play a critical role in shaping the patterns of regional urbanization in China.

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Correspondence to Lili Wei .

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Wei, L., Wang, P., Zhang, J. (2017). Regional Differences in Urbanization: A Case Study of Urban Agglomerations in Northwestern China. In: Tang, Z. (eds) China’s Urbanization and Socioeconomic Impact . Springer, Singapore. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-10-4831-9_4

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-10-4831-9_4

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  • Publisher Name: Springer, Singapore

  • Print ISBN: 978-981-10-4830-2

  • Online ISBN: 978-981-10-4831-9

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