Project without external funding

The dynamics of peri-urbanization in the Pearl River Delta: Emerging land use patterns, urban villages and their linkages to global mechanisms.

Project Details
Project duration: 11/200603/2010

This project aims at analyzing the interaction of informal and formal dynamics occurring in
peri-urban areas of the Pearl River Delta. Peri-urban areas constitute areas that are neither
urban nor typically rural. They need to be defined by typological rather than simple
geographical models based on distance from urban centers. Typically, peri-urban areas
show a number of functions that are of high significance for the emergence and internal
differentiation of mega cities including ecological balance, land resource, hinterland for urban
economies, food production and processing, and recreation.
Specifically, it is intended to explore the role and significance of 'urban villages' as an
important actor in the emerging mega-urban region of the Pearl River Delta. While their
scope of influence is largely local, these informal structures are intertwined with mechanisms
of the global economy as is the entire region of the Pearl River Delta. It is assumed that the
modes of the formal/informal interaction define the degree of flexibility as well as the 'quality'
of the resulting social, economic and spatial patterns.
The project aims at exploring the interplay of various actors in the peri-urbanization
processes by studying its modalities, results and inherent contradictions. The underlying
general goal is to answer the question as to whether the locational factors and living
conditions in the 'urban landscape' can be sustained in the long term through the interplay of
formal and informal systems and actors.
Thereby the project will contribute towards building a general theoretical framework for
mega-cities, their internal patterns of change and differentiation and their linkages to global

Last updated on 2017-11-07 at 15:01