Emerging cities and urban theories: a Chinese perspective

Fulong Wu (2019) Emerging cities and urban theories: a Chinese perspective. In Denise Pumain (ed.)Theories and models of urbanization. Springer: Berlin.

The word ‘city’ in Chinese is actually composed of two characters, ‘cheng’ (city) and ‘shi’ (market). The book ‘Spring and Autumn Annals of Wu and Yue’ written in 25-220 AD describes the origin of the city as: ‘building the city for the emperor; developing the market for people. This is the origin of the city’. The Chinese definition points out two forces in city building: economic activities and governance. The purpose of this chapter is to understand cities as the outcome of both economic agglomeration and the politics of development. The research question we ask here is: what are the driving forces for the concentration of population and economic activities into the variegated spatial forms known as cities?

For the full paper, please download pdf file here.

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