"Formal" and "informal" urbanisation in China. Trends in Fujian province.

  • Y Zhu
  • Published 1998 in Third world planning review


This paper reveals Fujian's urbanization paths and reestimates its urbanization trend since the 1980s. In doing this, special attention is given to the profound socioeconomic changes affecting the province, especially the designation of small urban centers, the development of township and village enterprises (TVEs), and temporary residents. The economic development in Fujian province is an example wherein it divides China's urbanization process into 'formal' and 'informal' patterns. By using this concept of urbanization, it revealed a transformation from a state-sponsored and strictly controlled urbanization process into a dynamic development mainly promoted by local economic activities. It strongly suggests that the confines of China's official data on urbanization prevent a full appreciation of the essence of the urbanization process since 1978. The development of TVEs, facilitated by the creation of many small urban centers, together with more and more temporary residents, has become the main feature of the urbanization process in the Fujian province. Without these components, the analysis of urbanization provides only an incomplete and superficial picture of China's urban growth.

Cite this paper

@article{Zhu1998FormalA, title={"Formal" and "informal" urbanisation in China. Trends in Fujian province.}, author={Y Zhu}, journal={Third world planning review}, year={1998}, volume={20 3}, pages={267-84} }