Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization

A special issue of Land (ISSN 2073-445X). This special issue belongs to the section "Urban Contexts and Urban-Rural Interactions".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 July 2022) | Viewed by 90774

Special Issue Editors

College of Urban and Environmental Sciences, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China
Interests: comparative urban studies; global city; social justice; rural development
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Center for Social Sciences, Southern University of Science and Technology, Shenzhen 518055, China
Interests: water governance; environmental politics; political ecology; common-pool resources

E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
College of Urban and Environmental Sciences, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China
Interests: urban geography; metropolitan development; urban-rural planning
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Urban and rural areas are interdependent. The rapid urbanization we are seeing globally poses both challenges and opportunities for sustainable rural development. Cities rely heavily on rural areas for food, water, and even labor force, a reliance that might cause resource shortage, or even depletion, in the countryside. There are also extensive urban-to-rural flows of goods, investment, and information, which might provide new opportunities and ideas for sustainable rural development. Against the background of rapid urbanization, it is imperative to study the rural transformation of economy, society, landscape, and governance as urban and rural areas are increasingly embedded in a complex web of connections.

This Special Issue focuses on sustainable rural transformation in the context of rapid urbanization. It aims to bring academic discussion and professional practices into conversation with one another, and to help promote rural sustainability. We welcome theoretical reflections from different perspectives, methodological explorations from different disciplines, and empirical studies (both qualitative such as case studies and quantitative such as modeling) from different geographic areas. The key topics include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Sustainable livelihoods of rural households
  • Poverty alleviation
  • Social justice
  • Out-migration and rural population change
  • Governance of the commons in rural areas
  • Rural land use transition
  • Spatial planning for sustainable rural development
  • Research methods in rural studies

Dr. Tao Liu
Dr. Qiujie Sh
Dr. Raymond Yu Wang
Dr. Guangzhong Cao
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • rural transformation
  • sustainability
  • urban-rural relations
  • population change
  • poverty
  • inequality
  • livelihood
  • governance

Published Papers (35 papers)

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14 pages, 2105 KiB  
Article
Social Justice in Urban–Rural Flood Exposure: A Case Study of Nanjing, China
by Yi Chen, Hui Liu, Zhicong Ye, Hao Zhang, Bifeng Jiang and Yang Zhang
Land 2022, 11(9), 1588; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11091588 - 16 Sep 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1905
Abstract
The environmental justice research on urban–rural exposure to flooding is underdeveloped and few empirical studies have been conducted in China. This study addresses this gap by exploring the probabilities of exposure to floods (10-, 20-, and 50-year) and examining the relationship between vulnerable [...] Read more.
The environmental justice research on urban–rural exposure to flooding is underdeveloped and few empirical studies have been conducted in China. This study addresses this gap by exploring the probabilities of exposure to floods (10-, 20-, and 50-year) and examining the relationship between vulnerable groups and flooding in Nanjing, an important central city on the Yangtze River. Statistical analysis is based on multivariable generalised estimating equation (GEE) models that describe sociodemographic disparities at the census-tract level. The results revealed that (1) highly educated people in the urban centre are more likely to live in areas with high flood risk because of the abundance of education resources, and employment opportunities are concentrated in the urban centre. (2) Natives in suburban areas are more likely to live in flood-prone areas due to their favourable ecological environments near rivers and lakes. (3) Women in rural areas are more likely to live in high-flood-risk zones because most of the men are migrant workers. These findings highlight the urgent need to develop mitigation strategies to reduce flood exposure, especially in districts with high proportions of socially disadvantaged people. The linkages between rural and urban areas need to be strengthened in order to reduce flood exposure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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18 pages, 879 KiB  
Article
The Effects of Parental Migrant Work Experience on Labor Market Performance of Rural-Urban Migrants: Evidence from China
by Min Wu, Mengyun Jin, Luyao Zeng and Yihao Tian
Land 2022, 11(9), 1507; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11091507 - 8 Sep 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1414
Abstract
With the development of China’s economy and the deepening of urbanization, the number of migrants whose parents have migrant work experience continues to rise. However, what is the long-term impact of parental migrant work experience on migrant children? Existing literature has not yet [...] Read more.
With the development of China’s economy and the deepening of urbanization, the number of migrants whose parents have migrant work experience continues to rise. However, what is the long-term impact of parental migrant work experience on migrant children? Existing literature has not yet adequately answered. Based on the data from the China Migrants Dynamic Survey in 2016–2017, this article uses a multiple linear regression model to examine the impact of parental migrant work experience on the income of rural-urban migrants and its impact mechanism and heterogeneity empirically. We find that parental migrant work experience has a positive impact on the monthly income of second-generation rural-urban migrants. Specifically, compared with those whose parents had no such experience, the average monthly income of those whose parents had such experience increased significantly by 3.08% (approximately 124 yuan), and this effect was more apparent when fathers had migrant work experience. The main influencing channel comes from the significant increase in the probability of rural-urban migrants choosing self-employment. The results of the heterogeneity analysis showed that this effect was more significant in the sample of males and those with high school education and below. After a series of robustness tests, these conclusions remain valid. This work enriches the corresponding research literature and provides empirical evidence for studying the long-term effects of parents’ early experiences on their children. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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21 pages, 3057 KiB  
Article
Population Dynamics in China’s Urbanizing Megaregion: A Township-Level Analysis of the Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei Region
by Yanxi Wang, Yunxia Zhuo and Tao Liu
Land 2022, 11(9), 1394; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11091394 - 25 Aug 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1925
Abstract
China is currently in a period of accelerated urbanization, and the population pattern of urbanizing megaregions is undergoing drastic changes. Accurately grasping the population density patterns and evolution trends has become essential. Based on the township-level population data, through population density classification, population [...] Read more.
China is currently in a period of accelerated urbanization, and the population pattern of urbanizing megaregions is undergoing drastic changes. Accurately grasping the population density patterns and evolution trends has become essential. Based on the township-level population data, through population density classification, population concentration index, and regression analysis, this research investigated the evolution of the spatial pattern of population density and the influencing factors in the Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei region. Results showed that the population continued to concentrate in the municipal districts of Beijing and Tianjin and the township units where county governments were located, thereby causing a more unbalanced population distribution and a wider urban–rural disparity. Population dynamics are influenced by the market and the government. County-level administrative centers have continued to appeal to the population. The strategy of decentralizing the non-capital functions of Beijing has promoted the decentraliztion of population, albeit to a limited extent. However, key township policy has played a minor role in population change. Owing to particularities in the development stage and social system, the population dynamics in the Beijing–Tianjin–Hebei region differ from those of other developed countries. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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16 pages, 4148 KiB  
Article
An Analysis of Eco–Environmental Changes in Rural Areas in China Based on Sustainability Indicators between 2000 and 2015
by Lei Wang, Bo Yu, Fang Chen, Ning Wang and Congrong Li
Land 2022, 11(8), 1321; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11081321 - 16 Aug 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1480
Abstract
Ecological zoning and green–development assessment at the village–town scale in China are significant tasks for sustainable planning in China. In this study, we build an index system to calculate the eco–environmental vulnerability score and divide the results into extreme, heavy, moderate, light, and [...] Read more.
Ecological zoning and green–development assessment at the village–town scale in China are significant tasks for sustainable planning in China. In this study, we build an index system to calculate the eco–environmental vulnerability score and divide the results into extreme, heavy, moderate, light, and slight levels based on evidence from 43,046 villages and towns in China from 2000 to 2015; then, we build a sustainable–development score calculation criterion to perform sustainability assessments. The results show that nine indexes (digital elevation model (DEM), slope, net primary productivity (NPP), total rainfall per year, per capita cultivated land, farmland proportion, grassland proportion, forestland proportion, and construction–land proportion) are the main factors in the variation in eco–environmental vulnerability under the conditions of urbanization. The eco–environment is found to have worsened from 2000 to 2015, and the deterioration areas are mainly concentrated in Tibet, the eastern area of Xinjiang and the Xing’an Mountains region. Economic growth and ecological protection can achieve common development when eco–environmental vulnerability is at light and slight levels, while when eco–environmental vulnerability is fragile, the inhibitory effect of economic growth is obvious in rural areas. The results can provide useful information for village–town planning. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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21 pages, 5642 KiB  
Article
How Good Are Global Layers for Mapping Rural Settlements? Evidence from China
by Ningcheng Wang, Xinyi Zhang, Shenjun Yao, Jianping Wu and Haibin Xia
Land 2022, 11(8), 1308; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11081308 - 13 Aug 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2041
Abstract
Global urbanization has brought about a significant transition to rural areas. With the development of remote sensing technologies, land use/land cover (LULC) datasets allow users to analyze the changes in global rural settlements. However, few studies have examined the performances of the LULC [...] Read more.
Global urbanization has brought about a significant transition to rural areas. With the development of remote sensing technologies, land use/land cover (LULC) datasets allow users to analyze the changes in global rural settlements. However, few studies have examined the performances of the LULC datasets in mapping rural settlements. Taking China as the study area, this research selected eight of the latest LULC datasets (ESRI Land Cover, WSF, ESA WorldCover, GHS-BUILT-S2, GISD30, GISA2.0, GLC30, and GAIA) to compare their accuracy for rural settlement detection. Spatial stratified sampling was used for collecting and sampling rural settlements. We conducted omission tests, area comparison, and pixel-based accuracy tests for comparison. The results show that: (1) the performances of the 10 m resolution datasets are better than those of the 30 m resolution datasets in almost all scenarios. (2) the mapping of villages in Western China is a challenge for all datasets. (3) GHS-BUILT-S2 performs the best in almost every scenario, and can allow users to adjust the threshold value for determining a proper range of rural settlement size; ESRI outperforms any other dataset in detecting the existence of rural settlements, but it dramatically overestimates the area of rural settlements. (4) GISD30 is the best among the 30 m resolution datasets, notably in the Pearl River Delta. Finally, we provide useful suggestions on ideal map selection in various regions and scenarios. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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19 pages, 4989 KiB  
Article
Analysis of Outdoor Activity Space-Use Preferences in Rural Communities: An Example from Puxiu and Yuanyi Village in Shanghai
by Ledi Wen and Lei Sima
Land 2022, 11(8), 1273; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11081273 - 8 Aug 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2353
Abstract
The creation of outdoor activity spaces in rural communities is an important indicator to enhance the happiness of villagers and an important means to promote rural revitalization through improving the living environment. However, the urbanization trend of spatial forms has caused problems in [...] Read more.
The creation of outdoor activity spaces in rural communities is an important indicator to enhance the happiness of villagers and an important means to promote rural revitalization through improving the living environment. However, the urbanization trend of spatial forms has caused problems in the construction of many new rural activity spaces, such as the homogenized design and the lack of attention to the real demands of local residents. In order to understand urban-rural differences as well as inter-rural difference of outdoor activity space preferences in today’s China, so as to optimize the planning and design of public space optimization in rural communities, this study took Puxiu and Yuanyi Village in the suburbs of Shanghai as examples, executed field questionnaire surveys to ascertain villagers’ general preferences for outdoor spaces as well as their personal diversities. The results suggested that urban-rural differences were generally reflected in the practicability, economy, rurality, and diversity of the spaces, and it was found that there are significant relationships between residents’ preferences and their personal attributes, such as gender, age, and occupation. Moreover, the essentials for optimizing community activity space design that reflect urban-rural differences as well as the characteristics of different types of villages were also discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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16 pages, 3962 KiB  
Article
Spatial and Temporal Patterns of Urban Land Use Structure in Small Towns in China
by Yongqiang Sun, Yan Li, Jing Gao and Yan Yan
Land 2022, 11(8), 1262; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11081262 - 6 Aug 2022
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 1806
Abstract
This study analyzes the spatial and temporal characteristics of urban land use structure of more than 18,000 small towns in China by using the National Urban Land Use Survey Data between 2009 and 2013. It finds that the urban land area of small [...] Read more.
This study analyzes the spatial and temporal characteristics of urban land use structure of more than 18,000 small towns in China by using the National Urban Land Use Survey Data between 2009 and 2013. It finds that the urban land area of small towns expanded rapidly during the research period. The spatial pattern of urban land use structure in small towns exhibits significant regional differences. Small towns in developed coastal regions, particularly those located in global urban areas, have a higher urban land use scale relative to small towns in central and western regions. However, the urban land use scale of small towns located in less developed inland areas has grown faster. The spatial distribution of urban stock land in small towns is mainly influenced by demographic and socio-economic factors. However, the spatial distribution of new urban land is primarily influenced by the land supply policy, which is tilted toward the central and western regions. In terms of structure, the proportion of production and living land in small towns is high, while the proportion of public services and facilities land is low. This trend is being strengthened, with commercial service land and industrial, mining, and storage land becoming the major drivers for the rapid rise of urban land in small towns. The allocation of construction land quotas should be consistent with the direction of population movement and the demands of socioeconomic development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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17 pages, 2610 KiB  
Article
The Heterogeneous Effects of Multilevel Location on Farmland Abandonment: A Village-Level Case Study in Tai’an City, China
by Yingzhi Qiu and Guangzhong Cao
Land 2022, 11(8), 1233; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11081233 - 4 Aug 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1575
Abstract
As a global phenomenon, farmland abandonment continues to challenge the sustainability of the agri-food supply and rural development. Investigating the heterogeneous effects of multilevel location on farmland abandonment is of great importance to understand the spatial disparity and the mechanism of farmland abandonment, [...] Read more.
As a global phenomenon, farmland abandonment continues to challenge the sustainability of the agri-food supply and rural development. Investigating the heterogeneous effects of multilevel location on farmland abandonment is of great importance to understand the spatial disparity and the mechanism of farmland abandonment, which has significant policy implications for food security and rural revitalization. Taking Tai’an City as a case, this study aims to explore the impact of multilevel location on farmland abandonment at the village level and its spatial heterogeneity. The results show that (1) high accessibility to regional centers and roads, rather than remoteness, leads to a high rate of farmland abandonment; (2) the effect of location varies depending on the level of location. High-level regional centers (city centers and county centers) and roads (national and provincial highways) exert a stronger impact on farmland abandonment than low-level town centers and county highways; (3) the effect of location is topographically heterogeneous due to the influence of terrain on the marginalization of farmland. In the plains, except for county highways, the distance to different levels of regional centers and roads is significantly negatively correlated with farmland abandonment. However, in mountainous areas, only high-level regional centers have significant negative impacts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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23 pages, 3621 KiB  
Article
Study on Spatial–Temporal Evolution Characteristics and Restrictive Factors of Urban–Rural Integration in Northeast China from 2000 to 2019
by Yige Sun and Qingshan Yang
Land 2022, 11(8), 1195; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11081195 - 29 Jul 2022
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 1825
Abstract
With the rapid development of urbanization and the widening gap between urban and rural areas, how to effectively enhance the balanced development of urban and rural areas as well as promote the integrated development of urban and rural areas have become heated topics. [...] Read more.
With the rapid development of urbanization and the widening gap between urban and rural areas, how to effectively enhance the balanced development of urban and rural areas as well as promote the integrated development of urban and rural areas have become heated topics. Based on the basic theory of urban–rural integration and spatial balance, this paper establishes a comprehensive evaluation system. Using a coupling coordination model and an obstacle degree model, this paper selects 32 indicators from aspects of economy, society and ecology to measure the development level of urban–rural integration in 34 prefecture-level cities in Northeast China from 2000 to 2019. We also analyze the spatial pattern, evolution type characteristics and obstacle factors of urban–rural relations. The results show that: (1) The growth rate of urban development in Northeast China is higher than that of rural development. Except for rural ecology, all dimensions of urban and rural areas have increased year by year, but there are large spatial differences within the region. (2) The urban–rural integration development level of Northeast China is growing constantly and the types of urban and rural coordination are all rising to a higher level. Areas with high urban–rural coordination levels are concentrated in the Harbin–Changchun urban agglomeration and the central and southern Liaoning urban agglomeration, with obvious agglomeration effects. (3) In the coordinated development of urban and rural areas, the restrictive degree of the rural social subsystem was higher than that of the urban subsystem. The restrictive factors in the coordinated development of urban and rural areas are relatively stable, and include per capita consumption expenditure, per capita public budget expenditure, books in public libraries per thousand people, etc. (4) The functions of rural social elements should be enhanced, and the social urban–rural integrated development mechanism should be established to promote the integrated development of urban and rural society. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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21 pages, 2439 KiB  
Article
Rural Residents’ Perceptions of Ecosystem Services: A Study from Three Topographic Areas in Shandong Province, China
by Binglu Wu, Wenzhuo Liang, Jiening Wang and Dongxu Cui
Land 2022, 11(7), 1034; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11071034 - 7 Jul 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1967
Abstract
Rural residents’ perception is an important way of evaluating rural ecosystem services. Different topographies affect the level of ecosystem services, thus affecting residents’ perceived preferences. This study conducted a questionnaire survey of 1176 rural residents in mountainous, hilly, and plain areas of Shandong [...] Read more.
Rural residents’ perception is an important way of evaluating rural ecosystem services. Different topographies affect the level of ecosystem services, thus affecting residents’ perceived preferences. This study conducted a questionnaire survey of 1176 rural residents in mountainous, hilly, and plain areas of Shandong Province. It analyzed respondents’ satisfaction with ecosystem services and landscape preferences in different topographical areas. The results showed that the perception of ecosystem services was higher than average in all three topographic areas. The perceptions from high to low were cultural services, provisioning services, and regulating services. The perception of ecosystem services was significantly affected by topography, with significant differences between mountainous and plain areas in particular. Rural residents’ perceptions of cultural services varied widely and there were diverse preferences. This study believes that the important concerns in enhancing the perception of ecosystem services among rural residents are to raise villagers’ ecological awareness by meeting their growing spiritual needs and the high sensitivity of older people. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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21 pages, 5194 KiB  
Article
Neighboring Effects on Ecological Functions: A New Approach and Application in Urbanizing China
by Rongxi Peng, Guangzhong Cao and Tao Liu
Land 2022, 11(7), 987; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11070987 - 29 Jun 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1282
Abstract
Rapid urbanization has widely induced fragmented landscapes and further negatively affected ecological functions. The edge effect is an approach commonly used to investigate these negative impacts. However, edge effect research tends to focus on the impacts that a certain landscape receives from its [...] Read more.
Rapid urbanization has widely induced fragmented landscapes and further negatively affected ecological functions. The edge effect is an approach commonly used to investigate these negative impacts. However, edge effect research tends to focus on the impacts that a certain landscape receives from its adjacent lands rather than to assess all the influences of the landscape edges in a region, even though the latter is critical for regional ecological planning. To fill in this gap, the concept of neighboring effect is raised and analyzed in this paper with a case study of Xintai City in Northern China. Results show that the neighboring effects are generally negative for ecological functions, especially in regions that experience rapid urbanization or heavy human activities. The U-shaped relationship between the neighboring effect of a patch and its distance to the nearest township center indicates that the border region of urban and built-up areas suffers the most negative influences due to the intense interactions between different land uses. The heterogeneous effects of influencing factors in urban and rural areas were revealed by the regression results. Socioeconomic development has more important influence on neighboring effects on ecological functions in rural areas than in urban areas, and local cadres’ support of environmental protection matters only in rural areas for a less ecological functional loss. This study quantitatively examined the negative ecological effects of landscape fragmentation during rapid urbanization and calls for more attention to ecological planning at the local scale. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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14 pages, 3278 KiB  
Article
Analysis of Spatial Patterns and Socioeconomic Activities of Urbanized Rural Areas in Fujian Province, China
by Qinghai Guo, Zhichao He, Dawei Li and Marcin Spyra
Land 2022, 11(7), 969; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11070969 - 24 Jun 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1968
Abstract
Rural urbanization under China’s process of rapid urbanization entails significant rural transformation and is profoundly influencing sustainable development. However, little research has been undertaken on spatial patterns and socioeconomic activities. In this study, we defined urbanized rural areas as territories where the population [...] Read more.
Rural urbanization under China’s process of rapid urbanization entails significant rural transformation and is profoundly influencing sustainable development. However, little research has been undertaken on spatial patterns and socioeconomic activities. In this study, we defined urbanized rural areas as territories where the population size, economic output, and built-up land area are larger than in other rural and urban areas. Using large-scale and high-granularity spatial data, we delimited 255 urbanized rural areas from the 15,117 village-level administrative units in Fujian Province, China, in 2015. Analysis of the spatial patterns of the urbanized rural areas showed that spatial clustering, proximity to well-developed urban centers, and transportation accessibility influenced the development of the urbanized rural areas. Analysis of socioeconomic activities in the urbanized rural areas showed that the urbanized rural areas are rudimentary urban areas in terms of socioeconomic activities. Specifically, we found four representative socioeconomic activities in the urbanized rural areas: an urban-like housing model, diverse non-agricultural activities, transportation improvements, and sufficient health services. Based on our findings, we put forward several policy implications. This study can add valuable new knowledge for rural and urbanization studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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21 pages, 2590 KiB  
Article
Factors Influencing the Coupling of the Development of Rural Urbanization and Rural Finance: Evidence from Rural China
by Jiali Zhou, Xiangbo Fan, Chenggang Li and Guofei Shang
Land 2022, 11(6), 853; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11060853 - 6 Jun 2022
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 1989
Abstract
This study empirically analyzes factors influencing the coupling and coordinated development of rural urbanization and rural finance. For this purpose, the study employs the coupling degree model and develops a panel quantile model to estimate the coupling degree and coupling coordination degree of [...] Read more.
This study empirically analyzes factors influencing the coupling and coordinated development of rural urbanization and rural finance. For this purpose, the study employs the coupling degree model and develops a panel quantile model to estimate the coupling degree and coupling coordination degree of rural urbanization and rural finance. Accordingly, the study presents panel data comprising 31 provinces, municipalities, and autonomous regions in China from 2010 to 2019. The empirical results reveal that the coupling degree of rural urbanization and rural finance is relatively low in most study areas. This result suggests that rural urbanization and rural financial development in most provinces in China have not exhibited coordinated development. Further, the results reveal that urban population density negatively affects the coupling and coordination degree of rural urbanization and rural finance. Moreover, the effects of urban population density are more significant in areas with a low coupling coordination degree compared with those with a higher coupling coordination degree. An increase in the quantile gradually decreases the effect of the proportion of educational expenditure to GDP on the degree of rural urbanization and rural financial coupling coordination. However, the effect of financial development efficiency increases accordingly. The per capita GDP, per capita fiscal expenditure, and per capita built-up area significantly affect all the quantiles, indicating a positive correlation. This correlation can promote the coupling and coordinated development of rural urbanization and rural finance. In areas with a low coupling coordination degree, the financial development scale significantly positively affects the coupling coordination degree of rural urbanization and rural finance. In areas with a high coupling coordination degree, the financial development scale significantly negatively correlates with the coupling coordination degree. In addition, a positive correlation exists between the financial development structure and the coupling coordination degree of rural urbanization and rural finance. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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24 pages, 4597 KiB  
Article
Spatiotemporal Characteristics of Rural Restructuring Evolution and Driving Forces in Mountainous and Hilly Areas
by Lulu Zhou, Li Wang, Kangchuan Su, Guohua Bi, Hongji Chen, Xiaoyu Liu and Qingyuan Yang
Land 2022, 11(6), 848; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11060848 - 5 Jun 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1661
Abstract
Rural restructuring is an effective means to boost rural revitalization. Research on rural restructuring and its driving forces is helpful to adjust the evolution direction of key development factors, and form a coupling and coordinated development pattern. Taking Chongqing as an example, this [...] Read more.
Rural restructuring is an effective means to boost rural revitalization. Research on rural restructuring and its driving forces is helpful to adjust the evolution direction of key development factors, and form a coupling and coordinated development pattern. Taking Chongqing as an example, this paper adopts basic geographic data, land use data, and social and economic data, and uses the entropy method, spatial econometric model, and GTWR model. The paper explores the spatiotemporal evolution pattern of influencing factors on rural restructuring from 2000 to 2018 from the perspective of exogenous driving and endogenous driving. The results show the following. (1) During the study period, the average values of the rural economic restructuring intensity index, social restructuring intensity index, spatial restructuring intensity index, and comprehensive restructuring intensity index were 0.138, 0.118, 0.123, and 0.379, respectively. During the research period, rural restructuring in Chongqing experienced four development stages: space-economic restructuring-led, economic-social restructuring-led, economic restructuring-led, and social-spatial restructuring-led. In general, the dominant speed of economic restructuring gradually accelerated, and the changes in spatial restructuring were obvious but still lagging. Compared with other periods, the characteristics of social restructuring and spatial restructuring were more obvious between 2015 and 2018. (2) Different types of rural restructuring were affected by exogenous and endogenous factors. Exogenous driving mainly showed a negative impact on the changes in rural restructuring in the study area, while endogenous driving mainly showed a positive impact. (3) The driving system composed of exogenous driving and endogenous driving showed obvious timing and dynamic fluctuation. From 2000 to 2005 and from 2015 to 2018, rural restructuring in the study area was balanced and driven by endogenous and exogenous factors. From 2005 to 2015, rural restructuring in the study area was dominated by exogenous driving. Based on the influence differences and internal correlations of the driving forces of rural restructuring, policy opinions are put forward from the two aspects of restructuring path and restructuring guarantee, which provide a scientific basis for the determination of rural development direction and path selection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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19 pages, 3047 KiB  
Article
Rural Industrial Geography in Urbanizing China: A Multiscalar Analysis of a Case Study in Xintai, Northern China
by Yunxia Zhuo and Tao Liu
Land 2022, 11(5), 687; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11050687 - 4 May 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2231
Abstract
The rapidly urbanizing global south has witnessed drastic changes in rural transformation in which industrial dynamics have played a fundamental role. However, research on rural industrial geography and its influencing factors is limited compared with its urban counterpart. The spatial pattern of rural [...] Read more.
The rapidly urbanizing global south has witnessed drastic changes in rural transformation in which industrial dynamics have played a fundamental role. However, research on rural industrial geography and its influencing factors is limited compared with its urban counterpart. The spatial pattern of rural industry in an ordinary county in China—Xintai—is examined by adopting a multi-level approach. The underlying factors are then explored by situating it into a hybrid historical and geographical process of economy, institution, and society. Results show that: (1) The process of rural industrialization is hierarchically and spatially uneven across the county with the first- and second-tier industrial villages clustering around the central city and along two main roads exhibiting a general pattern of ‘one core and two bands‘. (2) Despite the overall pattern of concentration, rural industry exhibits a polycentric and dispersed distribution at the county and township levels. (3) The resources have continued to play a pivotal role in shaping the current industrial geography of this formerly resource-dependent county, followed by market accessibility, role of government, social capital, and the within-township industrial distribution. This research demonstrates the importance of the multi-level perspective in recognizing and understanding rural industrial geography and reveals its differences in urban and rural areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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25 pages, 3106 KiB  
Article
A Geographic Analysis on Rural Reconstruction-Transformation-Revitalization: A Case Study of Jianghan Plain in China
by Mingjie Wang, Bin Yu, Rongrong Zhuo and Zhuofan Li
Land 2022, 11(5), 616; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11050616 - 21 Apr 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 3314
Abstract
At the beginning of the 21st century, with the rapid advancement of industrialization and urbanization, production factors such as population, capital, and land between urban and rural areas in China have gradually shifted to non-agricultural fields, the structure and function of rural territorial [...] Read more.
At the beginning of the 21st century, with the rapid advancement of industrialization and urbanization, production factors such as population, capital, and land between urban and rural areas in China have gradually shifted to non-agricultural fields, the structure and function of rural territorial systems have been reconstructed and transformed therewith. In response to the relatively declining villages, the Chinese government proposed rural revitalization strategy. Taking the human–land relationship as the theoretical basis and functional changes of rural region as the main line, the study analyzes the characteristics of rural reconstruction, interprets the rural transformation mechanism and deconstructs paths of rural revitalization by using the rural reconstruction index, the model of rural transformation measurement and rural spatial transformation effect. The case study shows that: (1) Rural reconstruction in Jianghan Plain is characterized by temporal continuity and spatial imbalance. The periodical changes presents from social-reconstruction-dominated, economic-reconstruction-dominated to spatial reconstruction -dominated. The distribution of high values varied from the U-type to O-type along the main transportation routes, while that of low values alternated between points (hinterlands of the Plain) and lines from spatial viewpoint. (2) The driving mechanism of rural transformation was the coupling effect of the exogenous drivers and endogenous responses. The standardized regression coefficient between the drivers and the changes to rural regional functions is 0.766. The endogenous response is mainly manifested as the negative effect of the rural spatial reconstruction on the territorial agriculture-oriented function. (3) The key path of rural revitalization facilitated the optimization of regional functions through reorganization of the rural elements in Jianghan Plain. It is the strategic choice of rural areas to implement regional function zoning and realize the balance of spatial function. The research results can provide inspiration for theoretical research on rural geography, and provide policy and method support for rural revitalization in case areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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16 pages, 2611 KiB  
Article
Reconfiguration of Cultural Resources for Tourism in Urban Villages—A Case Study of Huangpu Ancient Village in Guangzhou
by Liying Lin, Desheng Xue and Yi Yu
Land 2022, 11(4), 563; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11040563 - 11 Apr 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 3189
Abstract
In the course of China’s rapid urbanization, rural places are brought into urban areas, forming semi-urbanization. These semi-urbanized sites suggest a dual urban–rural structure in their form and management. With the slowing down of urbanization, the Chinese government adopted heritage tourism to boost [...] Read more.
In the course of China’s rapid urbanization, rural places are brought into urban areas, forming semi-urbanization. These semi-urbanized sites suggest a dual urban–rural structure in their form and management. With the slowing down of urbanization, the Chinese government adopted heritage tourism to boost the local economy. Local historic buildings and cultural resources were regenerated and restored in this process. This paper aims at examining the role of heritage tourism in blurring the boundary of rurality and urbanity, boosting local economy, and revitalizing the areas with cultural-led development. In this paper, we analyzed the Huangpu Ancient Village’s regeneration process. We argue that the Huangpu Ancient Village integrates local historical and cultural resources to boost the local economy, simultaneously adopting urban renewal and rural revival strategies. This paper contributes to the body of literature addressing villages in urban areas, breaking the duality of urbanity and rurality. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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17 pages, 7876 KiB  
Article
Analysis of the Expansion Characteristics of Rural Settlements Based on Scale Growth Function in Himalayan Region
by Kairui Guo, Yong Huang and Dan Chen
Land 2022, 11(3), 450; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11030450 - 21 Mar 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2698
Abstract
Road infrastructure is reshaping the rural settlement landscape in the Himalayan area of China through the construction of the rural road and strategic highway network. However, most methods based on multiple factors described in spatial analysis of rural settlement are limited by poor [...] Read more.
Road infrastructure is reshaping the rural settlement landscape in the Himalayan area of China through the construction of the rural road and strategic highway network. However, most methods based on multiple factors described in spatial analysis of rural settlement are limited by poor spatial response mechanisms of key factors. This study provides insight into the temporal and spatial process involving 15 rural settlements of Zhada County, west of the Himalayas. The growth of rural settlement follows a “short-head S-shape” function and the general expansion rule. It indicates the mode of evolution and the characteristics of construction. The results show that 70% of rural settlements continue to report the inertia of growth, while the reconstruction of the original site leads to historical spatial displacement under spatio-temporal compression. In addition, rural settlements display a spatial organization of interface area, hinterland, and fringe area and reveal two spatial paradigms of near-road expansion and peripheral extrusion. Further, the hinterland space, which is the core of rural settlement, is compact and intensive; a quarter of the hinterland space encompasses 45% of the settlement scale. These conclusions provide guidance for delineating village boundaries and improving the human settlement environment in the Himalayan-alpine plateau. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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18 pages, 5623 KiB  
Article
Land Use Change and Its Driving Factors in the Rural–Urban Fringe of Beijing: A Production–Living–Ecological Perspective
by Changchun Feng, Hao Zhang, Liang Xiao and Yongpei Guo
Land 2022, 11(2), 314; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11020314 - 21 Feb 2022
Cited by 24 | Viewed by 4414
Abstract
Production–Living–Ecological Space (PLES) is a useful tool to identify land use status patterns and optimize land resource allocation. In this study, the spatial econometric model was chosen to analyze the driving factors of land use change in Chaoyang District, part of the rural–urban [...] Read more.
Production–Living–Ecological Space (PLES) is a useful tool to identify land use status patterns and optimize land resource allocation. In this study, the spatial econometric model was chosen to analyze the driving factors of land use change in Chaoyang District, part of the rural–urban fringe in Beijing, from the perspective of PLES evolution, from 2005 to 2020. The results showed the following: (1) Production Space (PS) to Living-Non-Farm Production Space (LNPS) has been the most significant conversion process of PLES since 2005, making LNPS the PLES type with the highest proportion in the study area. (2) With the spatial order from near-to-far from the city center, the scale of PS was reduced and concentrated, Ecological Space (ES) was formed in a green belt at the periphery of Beijing, Eco-Agricultural Production Space (EAPS) and Living-Agricultural Production Space were rapidly reduced, and LNPS was rapidly expanded in the point-line-plane order. (3) The PS to LNPS conversion was mainly driven by economic development and industrial structure upgrades, while the PS to ES conversion was mainly due to the distribution of population density and also industrial structures. The conversion of EAPS to LNPS was driven by the increase of the urbanization rate and economic growth. This study confirmed the policy-driven effect of the conversion from PS to ES. Due to the “Concentric Circle” spatial structure of Beijing, the conversion of PLES is generally related to the distance from the city center. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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17 pages, 3617 KiB  
Article
Extracting Land Use Change Patterns of Rural Town Settlements with Sequence Alignment Method
by Senkai Xie, Wenjia Zhang, Yi Zhao and De Tong
Land 2022, 11(2), 313; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11020313 - 20 Feb 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2273
Abstract
Understanding land use change patterns of rural town settlements (RTSs) is crucial for rural and small-town planning; however, few studies have explored pattern mining approaches to RTS trajectory analysis. In this study, we adopted a novel method by building sequence alignment method (SAM) [...] Read more.
Understanding land use change patterns of rural town settlements (RTSs) is crucial for rural and small-town planning; however, few studies have explored pattern mining approaches to RTS trajectory analysis. In this study, we adopted a novel method by building sequence alignment method (SAM) to detect representative trajectory clusters of land use change of 1158 RTSs in seven waves from 1980 to 2015 in Guangdong, China. The results suggest that there are 10 clusters of RTSs with varying trajectories of land use change, implying their differences in the development processes and underlying socioeconomic, demographical, and institutional factors. A spatial distribution map of RTSs shows that stable cultivated ecological and stable ecologically dominant RTSs are distributed in the northern, eastern, and western parts of Guangdong, whereas stable rural construction and stable mixed construction RTSs are mostly located around the provincial boundary. Notably, 73% of the RTSs that have undergone changes in land use types are located in the Pearl River Delta (PRD), including urbanized and agricultural upgraded RTSs. The analysis presented here summarizes the driving forces of the spatial evolution of RTSs, including the location, landforms, industries, and policy factors. This study provides dynamic policy implications to understand longitudinal and sequential spatial restructuring and regional coordinated development in the fast-growing PRD area. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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15 pages, 1264 KiB  
Article
How Land Finance Drives Urban Expansion under Fiscal Pressure: Evidence from Chinese Cities
by De Tong, Jun Chu, Qing Han and Xuan Liu
Land 2022, 11(2), 253; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11020253 - 8 Feb 2022
Cited by 52 | Viewed by 4205
Abstract
Urban expansion is commonly attributed to market-oriented forces, while public finance factors connected to government forces, especially land finance, in China’s institutional environment, can provide a more interesting explanation. Using a fixed-effect threshold model, the relationships of land finance and differing local fiscal [...] Read more.
Urban expansion is commonly attributed to market-oriented forces, while public finance factors connected to government forces, especially land finance, in China’s institutional environment, can provide a more interesting explanation. Using a fixed-effect threshold model, the relationships of land finance and differing local fiscal pressures to urban expansion in China were explored mathematically and empirically. It was found that land finance positively and significantly influences urban expansion. It was also found that the impact of land finance on urban spatial size varies with fiscal pressure. Results suggested that capital flows in the process of urban expansion should be carefully regulated by local governments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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18 pages, 1563 KiB  
Article
Influential Factors and Geographical Differences in the Redevelopment Willingness of Urban Villagers: A Case Study of Guangzhou, China
by Lizheng Zhang, Yumin Ye and Jiejing Wang
Land 2022, 11(2), 233; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11020233 - 4 Feb 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2083
Abstract
As a crucial part of China’s development strategy, the redevelopment of urban villages and the redevelopment willingness of villagers have attracted considerable scholarly interest. However, the literature to date has neglected the effect of the geographical location of urban villages on the redevelopment [...] Read more.
As a crucial part of China’s development strategy, the redevelopment of urban villages and the redevelopment willingness of villagers have attracted considerable scholarly interest. However, the literature to date has neglected the effect of the geographical location of urban villages on the redevelopment willingness of villagers. The purpose of this study is to examine the influential factors of the redevelopment willingness of urban villagers, especially with regard to geographical differences and their effects. Based on prospect theory and 1083 questionnaires administered in 45 selected urban villages in Guangzhou, we use the ordinal logistic regression model to explore the influential factors behind villagers’ redevelopment willingness in inner villages (<15 km from the city center), urban fringe villages (15–40 km from the city center), and suburban villages (>40 km from the city center). The results show that in inner villages the confirmation of residential land rights can significantly increase redevelopment willingness, but in urban fringe villages the number of stories in dwelling houses significantly decreases the willingness. Further, a high level of villagers’ trust in the government, market enterprises, and the village collective each has a significant positive impact on the redevelopment willingness of villagers in urban fringe villages. However, only trust in the government and market enterprises have significant positive impacts on redevelopment willingness in the inner villages and only trust in the village collective is significant in this regard in suburban villages. The effects of geographical differences imply that China’s redevelopment policy should be applied in a differentiated way based on the geographical locations of urban villages. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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21 pages, 532 KiB  
Article
Peer Effects in Housing Size in Rural China
by Tianjiao Li, Changchun Feng, Hao Xi and Yongpei Guo
Land 2022, 11(2), 172; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11020172 - 21 Jan 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2909
Abstract
In recent decades, rural China has witnessed a housing construction boom. In order to control the rapid growth of rural housing, both central and local governments have established quantitative restrictions on the floor numbers and total housing area; however, these have been relatively [...] Read more.
In recent decades, rural China has witnessed a housing construction boom. In order to control the rapid growth of rural housing, both central and local governments have established quantitative restrictions on the floor numbers and total housing area; however, these have been relatively ineffective. Current research to explain this rapid growth in rural housing tends to consider independent household behavior, while social interactions among villagers are neglected. Therefore, the aim of this article is to examine the existence of peer effects in the housing size of villagers and whether they differ among different regions to better understand the influence of social interactions on individual housing behaviors, especially in the context of rural China. A spatial autoregressive model with autoregressive disturbances (SARAR) was used to analyze data from the 2014 China Family Panel Studies (CFPS). The results confirm that villagers’ peer effects do exist, indicating that rural households build housing not only to satisfy their dwelling needs but also to keep up with the other villagers’ housing size. Moreover, there are regional disparities in terms of peer effects in rural housing size. Among the three regional parts, the undeveloped region in the western parts showed the largest peer effects. Therefore, local governments, especially from the underdeveloped region, should pay attention to the villagers’ inner motivations behind housing behavior. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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20 pages, 3623 KiB  
Article
Diversification and Spatial Differentiation of Villages’ Functional Types in the New Period of China: Results from Hierarchical Urban-Rural Spatial Relations and Townships Size
by Xuechun Yang and Maojun Wang
Land 2022, 11(2), 171; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11020171 - 21 Jan 2022
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2702
Abstract
In recent years, in rural geographic studies, the topic of multifunctions of rural areas has been gaining increasing interest, especially in China, which, as an agricultural power, is undergoing new urbanization and rural revitalization. As far as China is concerned, to classify administrative [...] Read more.
In recent years, in rural geographic studies, the topic of multifunctions of rural areas has been gaining increasing interest, especially in China, which, as an agricultural power, is undergoing new urbanization and rural revitalization. As far as China is concerned, to classify administrative villages from the perspective of their functions will contribute to scientifically guiding the configuration of urban-rural factors in terms of different regions and villages multifunctional types. This paper takes 3042 administrative villages of Tai’an city of Shandong province in eastern China as its basic study units and establishes a mapping system between land use types and rural territorial sub-functions, identifies their multifunctional types via cluster analysis, quantitatively analyzes their influencing factors with multivariate logistic regression, and summarizes their spatial structure characteristics. The results show that: 3042 administrative villages in Tai’an city can be functionally classified into seven types. The village multifunctional types are jointly decided by cities and natural production conditions. The distribution of all types of villages shows a “non-agricultural production to agricultural production” outward expansion structure. Our study can expand the research contents and methods of rural territorial multifunction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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17 pages, 604 KiB  
Article
Household Registration, Land Property Rights, and Differences in Migrants’ Settlement Intentions—A Regression Analysis in the Pearl River Delta
by Yuqu Wang, Zhigang Zhu, Zehong Wang, Qiying Xu and Chunshan Zhou
Land 2022, 11(1), 31; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11010031 - 25 Dec 2021
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2663
Abstract
Objectives: Few studies have examined the impacts of structural differences in the urban–rural dichotomy under the new household registration policy on migration and settlement behavior. Nevertheless, the rationale for the settlement policy of local governments should be further elucidated and improved. This study [...] Read more.
Objectives: Few studies have examined the impacts of structural differences in the urban–rural dichotomy under the new household registration policy on migration and settlement behavior. Nevertheless, the rationale for the settlement policy of local governments should be further elucidated and improved. This study aims to analyze the household registration, land property rights, and differences in migrants’ settlement intentions. Methods: This study used migration survey data from the Pearl River Delta and probit regression to fill this gap in the literature. Findings: Because of the long-term effects of the household registration system and their socioeconomic differences, urban-urban migrants and rural–urban migrants differed in their settlement intentions. Furthermore, the new points-based household registration system affected migrants’ settlement intentions. Relative to the rural–urban migrants, urban–urban migrants more easily met the settlement requirements under the points-based system, and they tended to settle in their current cities. By contrast, migrants with farmland in their hometowns tended to settle there. The findings underscore the relevance of adopting perspectives that consider the urban–rural dichotomy and related structural differences to understand migrants’ settlement intentions in China. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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18 pages, 1443 KiB  
Article
Occupation of Cultivated Land for Urban–Rural Expansion in China: Evidence from National Land Survey 1996–2006
by Yangbing Miao, Jiajie Liu and Raymond Yu Wang
Land 2021, 10(12), 1378; https://doi.org/10.3390/land10121378 - 13 Dec 2021
Cited by 15 | Viewed by 2599
Abstract
Construction land expansion often occurs on cultivated land in developing countries during rapid urbanization and industrialization. Understanding its characteristics and driving mechanisms is of great significance for land-use policy and sustainable development. This paper depicted the spatio-temporal patterns of China’s urban–rural expansion and [...] Read more.
Construction land expansion often occurs on cultivated land in developing countries during rapid urbanization and industrialization. Understanding its characteristics and driving mechanisms is of great significance for land-use policy and sustainable development. This paper depicted the spatio-temporal patterns of China’s urban–rural expansion and its occupation of cultivated land based on national land survey data from 1996 to 2006. It further explored the influencing mechanism of cultivated land occupation for urban–rural construction land. The results showed that the establishment and expansion of various economic development zones contribute to more than half of the occupation of cultivated land while the expansion of cities and towns is relatively slower, and their sources of construction land are more diverse. The empirical results showed that (1) economic growth and investment play key roles in shaping the spatio-temporal patterns of the occupation of cultivated land for urban–rural construction land, and (2) the mechanisms of cultivated land occupation in different stages of regional development are different. In particular, the establishment of national economic development zones is conducive to the intensive use of construction land and the protection of cultivated land in inland regions, whereas provincial economic development zones have led to a waste of land resources in coastal regions. Based on the results, this study suggested that the policies to the intensive use of land resources and cultivated land protection required regional disparities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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17 pages, 539 KiB  
Article
The Influence of Political Capital on Peasants’ Migration Behavior and Its Implications
by Haojing Shen, Yan Song, Changchun Feng and Zhengying Shan
Land 2021, 10(12), 1363; https://doi.org/10.3390/land10121363 - 10 Dec 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2529
Abstract
This study examined the influence of political capital on the migration behavior of peasant households in China’s equitable urbanization. While existing research has proven that political capital can increase the wages of migrant workers, leading to a higher possibility of their rural-to-urban migration, [...] Read more.
This study examined the influence of political capital on the migration behavior of peasant households in China’s equitable urbanization. While existing research has proven that political capital can increase the wages of migrant workers, leading to a higher possibility of their rural-to-urban migration, the direct impact of political capital on migration behavior has not received sufficient attention. As China is one of the largest emerging economies, the impact of political capital on the economy and political transformation is typical. This paper reports a survey of 1120 farmer households from Xinxiang, a traditional agricultural area in central China. Using a binary logit model to test whether peasant households will migrate and a multinomial logit model to test where they will migrate to, this study examined whether political capital had a significant influence on the migration behavior of peasant households. The results suggest that the peasant households with political capital have a higher possibility of moving to urban areas, even though there is a better habitational option, namely, a new village in the local rural area. This suggests that reducing the difference in the political capital of migrants through policy propaganda and other methods is an efficient and effective way to achieve and improve equitable access to urbanization. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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21 pages, 3140 KiB  
Article
Where to Revitalize, and How? A Rural Typology Zoning for China
by Yaojin Zhou, Yao Shen, Xuexi Yang, Zhifang Wang and Liyan Xu
Land 2021, 10(12), 1336; https://doi.org/10.3390/land10121336 - 4 Dec 2021
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 3218
Abstract
Under China’s Rural Revitalization program, it is essential to accurately determine the prospects of revival or decay for the villages alongside specific goals and paths, which existing literature lacks a systematic coverage. Based on rural typology theories, this paper proposes an analytical framework [...] Read more.
Under China’s Rural Revitalization program, it is essential to accurately determine the prospects of revival or decay for the villages alongside specific goals and paths, which existing literature lacks a systematic coverage. Based on rural typology theories, this paper proposes an analytical framework to determine the type of village revitalization from the perspective of factor endowments. Utilizing five groups of 45 indicators characterizing the natural, socio-economic, and cultural endowments of villages, this paper applies the Self-Organizing Mapping neural network to cluster 2,388,579 natural villages in 48,322 townships across the nation into the four basic types of rural revitalization as directed by China’s Strategic Plan for Rural Revitalization (2018–2022): (1) Agglomerative Promotion, (2) Suburban Annexation, (3) Special Endowment-based Development, and (4) Out-migration and Relocation. The results of cluster analysis are spatially visualized to form a national rural revitalization zoning map at the township level, the first attempt to our knowledge. We conclude the paper with discussions on the revitalization paths of the various types of villages, particularly the seemingly gloomy prospect of 2/3 of the villages falling into the fourth category, and ways to interpret the deterministic nature of the conclusion. The paper expands the understanding of rural typology to a national scale with both innovative categorization processes and strong linkages to revitalization practices. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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17 pages, 1096 KiB  
Article
Sustainable Transformation of Resettled Communities for Landless Peasants: Generation Logic of Spatial Conflicts
by Kexi Xu, Hui Gao, Haijun Bao, Fan Zhou and Jieyu Su
Land 2021, 10(11), 1171; https://doi.org/10.3390/land10111171 - 1 Nov 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1970
Abstract
Urbanization in China has resulted in serious conflicts. Landless peasants are resettled between urban and rural areas in transitional communities. where their rural lifestyles often lead to spatial conflicts. We proposed a conceptual model to provide theoretical guidance for the governance of spatial [...] Read more.
Urbanization in China has resulted in serious conflicts. Landless peasants are resettled between urban and rural areas in transitional communities. where their rural lifestyles often lead to spatial conflicts. We proposed a conceptual model to provide theoretical guidance for the governance of spatial conflicts and the sustainable transformation of resettled communities. Using field observations and semi-structured interviews, we examined 10 resettled communities in Hangzhou, China. The use of grounded theory to code the interview texts yielded 71 initial concepts and 22 categories that we then refined into six main categories: community physical environment (e.g., quality of private housing), community communication environment (e.g., heterogeneity of community population), landless peasants’ risk perceptions (e.g., impacts on social psychology), community governance capacity (e.g., trust in community’s self-governing organizations), residents’ space perceptions (e.g., awareness of space rights), and space competition behavior (e.g., fighting for public space). Finally, we applied social combustion theory to construct a logical relationship between the core category and main categories. The results show that changes in the physical and communication environments are the root elements (“combustion substances”) of spatial conflicts; the driving factors are landless peasants’ risk perceptions and community governance capabilities; direct elements (“ignition temperature”) are residents’ space perceptions and space competition behavior. Strategies for sustained transformation in resettled communities should prioritize gradual transitions of community space, improve support mechanisms for landless peasants, optimize community governance mechanisms, and cultivate awareness of community rules. This study aids the understanding of the inner mechanism for the sustainable development of resettled communities and has implications for other countries and regions in similar contexts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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20 pages, 19626 KiB  
Article
Decoding Rural Space Reconstruction Using an Actor-Network Methodological Approach: A Case Study from the Yangtze River Delta, China
by Haoyu Liu, Dalai Weng and Hongguang Liu
Land 2021, 10(11), 1110; https://doi.org/10.3390/land10111110 - 20 Oct 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2321
Abstract
Using actor-network theory (ANT), this paper explores the process and mechanisms of rural space reconstruction in China in the post-urbanization era. In the context of urban–rural integration development in China, villages have become diversified. They are not only the living spaces of villagers, [...] Read more.
Using actor-network theory (ANT), this paper explores the process and mechanisms of rural space reconstruction in China in the post-urbanization era. In the context of urban–rural integration development in China, villages have become diversified. They are not only the living spaces of villagers, but they are also consumption spaces of urban residents. Through a case study of a typical village in the Yangtze River Delta, this study highlights that the actor-network of rural spatial reconstruction includes heterogeneous actors, such as the village committee, villagers, governments, tourism enterprises, makers, housing, and landscape—among which the Lishui Government is the key actor. Therefore, this paper argues that China’s rural space reconstruction is greatly dependent on external resources such as government policy support or enterprise investment. In the future, promoting public participation will be necessary to realize villages’ endogenous transformation and development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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26 pages, 120133 KiB  
Article
Complex Network-Based Research on the Resilience of Rural Settlements in Sanshui Watershed
by Jizhe Zhou and Quanhua Hou
Land 2021, 10(10), 1068; https://doi.org/10.3390/land10101068 - 10 Oct 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2045
Abstract
In the context of farmland afforestation and urbanization, it is necessary for the small watershed rural settlements in the hilly–gully Loess Plateau to coordinate spatiotemporal changes and take the path of resilience development. In the case of the Sanshui Watershed, this paper investigates [...] Read more.
In the context of farmland afforestation and urbanization, it is necessary for the small watershed rural settlements in the hilly–gully Loess Plateau to coordinate spatiotemporal changes and take the path of resilience development. In the case of the Sanshui Watershed, this paper investigates the rural settlement systems based on complex networks, and develops a research framework of “spatial simulation–resilience evaluation–spatial planning”. The results include the evolution trends of settlement space from present to future, as well as its spatial resilience in static and dynamic states. In this study, a total of six central villages and six types of rural development are finalized, and the study area possesses a prolonged spatiotemporal resilience when 29 villages remain, thus forming an ideal spatial pattern of “rural corridor zones + characteristic towns”. The findings of this study can represent guidance for resilience development in small watershed villages and provide a basis for guiding the regional urban–rural integration, village layout, as well as resource allocation and construction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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14 pages, 457 KiB  
Article
Can Agricultural Disaster Relief Programs Affect Farmland Prices? Empirical Evidence from Farmland Transaction Data
by Tzong-Haw Lee, Hung-Hao Chang, Yi-Ting Hsieh and Bo-Yuan Chang
Land 2021, 10(7), 728; https://doi.org/10.3390/land10070728 - 10 Jul 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1798
Abstract
The literature on the capitalization of agricultural policies documents that government subsidies can increase farmland values with attesting empirical evidence found in a variety of agricultural programs. This study argues that the well-documented capitalization effect of agricultural subsidies on farmland prices may not [...] Read more.
The literature on the capitalization of agricultural policies documents that government subsidies can increase farmland values with attesting empirical evidence found in a variety of agricultural programs. This study argues that the well-documented capitalization effect of agricultural subsidies on farmland prices may not be directly related to the agricultural disaster relief program (ADRP). On the one hand, disaster relief payments can positively capitalize into farmland prices. On the other hand, disaster shocks may result in farm income loss which can decrease farmland prices. This paper empirically examines the overall effect of the ADRP on farmland prices in Taiwan. A unique dataset on 97,864 parcels of farmland transacted in the farmland market is used. By estimating the fixed effect and instrumental variable fixed effect model, a negative overall effect of the incidence and the level of ADRP payments on farmland prices is evident. Moreover, the effect is more pronounced among farmland located in urban areas. This finding provides evidence that the negative stigmatized effect dominates the positive capitalization effect of the ADRP payments on farmland values, especially for farmland located in urban areas (JEL Q15, Q18, Q54). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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24 pages, 3847 KiB  
Article
Making Rural Micro-Regeneration Strategies Based on Resident Perceptions and Preferences for Traditional Village Conservation and Development: The Case of Huangshan Village, China
by Xuesong Xi, Haiyun Xu, Qiang Zhao and Guohan Zhao
Land 2021, 10(7), 718; https://doi.org/10.3390/land10070718 - 7 Jul 2021
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 3853
Abstract
Micro-regeneration is a gradual renewal strategy that uses small-scale interventions to improve the quality of the living environment and local community, as well as spur industrial development. It is the small-scale interventions that have continued to make micro-regeneration a viable economic rural renewal [...] Read more.
Micro-regeneration is a gradual renewal strategy that uses small-scale interventions to improve the quality of the living environment and local community, as well as spur industrial development. It is the small-scale interventions that have continued to make micro-regeneration a viable economic rural renewal approach for traditional village conservation and development. As such, in this work we explore potential micro-regeneration strategies and promotions based on assessments of public perception and preferences in an “unlisted” traditional village in China (i.e., an area with limited investment for conservation compared to “listed”, renowned traditional villages). We aim to identify the most perceptible modes of village transformation and industrial development for rural micro-regeneration strategies in the Huangshan traditional village of China. We also tested how the social character of respondents significantly affected their preferences in this regard. The public participatory mapping results illustrated a spatially clustered pattern made up of small spaces and individual buildings demanding micro-regeneration interventions. The survey based on 150 residents living around these sites disclosed that a unified repair approach subsidized by government and traffic condition improvements are the most recognized modes of village transformation, and the tourism is the most perceived and preferred method for industrial development. Significant differences between public perceptions and preferences of both village transformation and industrial development were identified corresponding to gender and income demographics, while village transformation perceptions change is dependent on age. Therefore, our study demonstrates evidence-based recommendations for active and effective rural micro-regeneration practices. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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19 pages, 1600 KiB  
Article
Tourism-led Commodification of Place and Rural Transformation Development: A Case Study of Xixinan Village, Huangshan, China
by Pinyu Chen and Xiang Kong
Land 2021, 10(7), 694; https://doi.org/10.3390/land10070694 - 1 Jul 2021
Cited by 25 | Viewed by 5539
Abstract
Rural commodification with rural transformation development is a potential research agenda for rural geography. Based on semi-structured interviews in five times fieldwork in Xixinan Village, Huangshan, China, this article examines how the township government as an actor with entrepreneurialism promotes the commodification of [...] Read more.
Rural commodification with rural transformation development is a potential research agenda for rural geography. Based on semi-structured interviews in five times fieldwork in Xixinan Village, Huangshan, China, this article examines how the township government as an actor with entrepreneurialism promotes the commodification of place in rural areas and its impact on rural transformation development. It was found that the township government has drawn economic returns from different subjects of tourism entrepreneurs, tourists, and lifestyle immigrants by the efforts of commodifying real estate, creative tourism experience, and nature. Rural transformation development is accompanied by rural commodification, showing rural gentrification, expansion of employment opportunities for women, and the readjustment of the social structure of the family in the demographic structure. Rural tourism and rural creative industries have developed, complementing the single agricultural structure, constituting a mutual intersection and integration among these three industries. Regarding social and cultural values, rural commodification promoted the awareness of place in protecting ancient buildings and indigenous culture, but it also brought a sense of deprivation for community and contested rurality among different groups. The development state of rural transformation is constantly changing, and the new challenges arising from it to the rural revitalization of China, in this case, are also identified. The contribution of this article is to expand the analytical dimension of the commodification of place in rural areas and examine the state entrepreneurism associated with it. It also contributes to improving the understanding of the current development state of rural transformation in China. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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Review

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22 pages, 5211 KiB  
Review
Rural Ecological Problems in China from 2013 to 2022: A Review of Research Hotspots, Geographical Distribution, and Countermeasures
by Binglu Wu, Di Mu, Yi Luo, Zhengguang Xiao, Jilong Zhao and Dongxu Cui
Land 2022, 11(8), 1326; https://doi.org/10.3390/land11081326 - 16 Aug 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2761
Abstract
Due to the changes in land use types and industrial agglomeration brought by the long-term rapid urbanization, the ecology of China’s rural areas has been greatly impacted. The health of residents and other living beings living in rural areas has been affected. In [...] Read more.
Due to the changes in land use types and industrial agglomeration brought by the long-term rapid urbanization, the ecology of China’s rural areas has been greatly impacted. The health of residents and other living beings living in rural areas has been affected. In recent years, the ecology of the rural environment has been paid attention to. This study performed a bibliometric analysis of 167 papers on the Web of Science from 2013 to 2022. It shows that policy management and environmental science were two main research fields in solving the ecological and environmental crisis in China’s rural areas. Additionally, it was found that the study areas often spanned administrative districts, and the research was mainly based on the integrity of the overall ecosystem. The cases studied were mainly distributed in the following three types of areas: continuous river basins and lake basins; economically developed regions; and less developed areas with relatively fragile ecosystems. Ecological elements such as water, soil, air, and vegetation were all included in the study aims. Finally, from the perspective of institutional reform, comprehensive approaches to solving China’s rural ecological environmental problems in the current research were identified, including the revision of laws and regulations, economic means, technological innovation, and public participation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Rural Transformation under Rapid Urbanization)
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