Academic journal article Canadian Social Science

The Overall Analysis and Regional Difference of China's Urbanization

Academic journal article Canadian Social Science

The Overall Analysis and Regional Difference of China's Urbanization

Article excerpt


Development of urbanization is the primary driving force of restructuring China's economic and stimulating domestic demand. It's important to study the progress of China's current urbanization. It has an important practical significance to research on the determinants of China's contemporary urbanization. In this paper, the authors use panel data of 31 provinces from 2001 to 2011 to analyze the determinants of China's urbanization. On the whole, it's found that economic growth, industrial structure, investment of fixed assets, education level, economic gap between urban and rural areas, farmers' income structure have positive and significant effects. In the background of the difference of natural conditions and economic fundamentals, the determinants of urbanization has obvious regional differences.

Key Words: Urbanization; Determinants; Overall analysis; Regional difference

(ProQuest: ... denotes formulae omitted.)


The Third Plenary Session of the Eighteenth Party Congress pointed called to promote urbanization of the population and transfer agricultural population to urban residents gradually so as to make urbanization become the main power to stimulate domestic demand and restructure China's economy. Urbanization is an objective law in the process of economic progress. With the escalation of industrial structure, a large number of rural surplus labor transfer to the second and tertiary industry. Urbanization has become a sign to measure a country's industrialization and modernization. Due to the dual economic structure of China, urban and rural labor element can't flow freely, thus constituting a large number of rural surplus labors. According to the research of Hu Angang (2003), it shows that the rural surplus labor case the opportunity cost of output equal to 20% to 30% of GDP and the opportunity cost of consumption equal to 2% to 10%. Therefore, urbanization does not only transfer the rural surplus labor to urban, but also brings huge benefits to China's economy, and the sustainable development of economy.

Since China's reform and opening up policy, the speed of urbanization has risen rapidly. Depending on national statistics, China's urbanization rate reached 52.57% in 2012. Compared with the urbanization rate of 1978, it increased by 34.65%. On the basis of the law of urbanization development in the world, Northam (1975) put forward the "S"curve of urbanization development, and thought that the urbanization development could be divided into three stages: "start, acceleration and mature". It is the acceleration stage of urbanization when the urbanization rate is during 30% to 70%. Now, China's urbanization is at this stage. How to promote the development of urbanization steadily, has become the difficult point of the current theory and policy research. The central government also pays high attention to this problem. The Urbanization Work Conference held in December 2013 pointed out that urbanization is the only way for modernization. Promoting urbanization is an essential approach to solve the problem of agriculture, countryside and farmers. It is likewise a powerful support for promoting coordinated regional development and an important way to expand domestic demand and promote industrial upgrading. It has an essential realistic significance in building the well-off society and accelerating the socialist modernization.


The problem of progress of urbanization has always been the hot issue of the study abroad. Earlier studies in the 1950s, through the study of more than one hundred years histories of American, Lanmpard (1955) found that there is a positive and significant correlation between urbanization and economic growth. Northam (1975) also found that the progress of urbanization and economic growth exists a rough linear relationship. In the early empirical studies, Pandey (1977) used the India's census data found that industrial development has a significant positive effect on the process of urbanization, planting density has a negative effect. …

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