Journal of Geographical Sciences ›› 2012, Vol. 22 ›› Issue (3): 521-534 .doi: 10.1007/s11442-012-0944-z

• Human-Environment Interactions • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Advantages and dynamics of urban agglomeration development on Yangtze River Delta

WANG Jing1,2, FANG Chuanglin1, WANG Zhenbo1   

  1. 1. Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China;
    2. Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
  • Received:2011-10-30 Revised:2011-12-20 Online:2012-06-15 Published:2012-05-04
  • Contact: Fang Chuanglin (1966-), Ph.D and Professor, E-mail:
  • About author:Wang Jing (1983-), Ph.D, specialized in regional and urban development. E-mail:
  • Supported by:

    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.40971101; No.40901087


Urban agglomeration on Yangtze River Delta (UA-YRD) had some advantages in the aspects of water, land, ecological environment, location and transportation. Relying on the resource-environment bases and other advantages, UA-YRD has achieved great development. Based on index system and model of comprehensive evaluation, the paper calculates the development level of UA-YRD since 1978. The result shows that from 1978 to 2007, the development level increased year by year at an annual rate of 0.0333, and the process of development could be divided into three stages, i.e. low-speed development stage (1978-1991), rapid development stage (1991-2000), and high-speed development stage (2000-2007). The speeds are 0.0083, 0.0356 and 0.0766, respectively. During the 30-year development, foreign economic activity has the greatest effect on development, followed by transportation, industrial economic activity and telecommunication (in order). Additionally, different driving forces have different effects in different stages. The paper suggests that more attention should be paid to the high-speed development stage and the important driving forces to drive its development. At the same time, the limitation of resource and environment should not be neglected and a long effective mechanism needs to be established to sustain harmonious development among the UA development, resource utilization and environmental protection. Some comparative studies should be carried out urgently to support and promote sustainable development of UA effectively, especially towards evolution, driving forces and braking forces.

Key words: urban agglomeration on Yangtze River Delta, development evolution, driving forces, braking forces