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[Beijing Forum 2015] Special Panel I–New Urbanization: Global Experience and China’s way (Session 2)

NOV . 11 2015
Peking University, Nov. 7, 2015: On November 7, the second session of Panel “New Urbanization: Global Experience and China’s way” was held in the School of International Studies. Professor John Logan, Robin Visser, Daniel Sui and Kenneth Yeang were invited to give lectures on China’s urbanization.
Professor John Logan delivered a presentation entitled “Interpreting the Challenges of China’s Rapid Urbanization”. He pointed out four kinds of issues that would arise in rapid urbanization: rural-urban divide, incorporation of newcomers, independent labor movements and growth crises. John mainly focused on the discussion of rural-urban divide in China’s urbanization. He showed the gap between rural and urban area in education, housing and welfare.
When talking about how to eliminate rural-urban inequality, he said, the solutions are obvious…you can make investments in the countryside and make less investment, less subsidization in major cities that are already growing, and in fact they have enough capital to continue sustained growth for a long time.” However, it is not easy to achieve this, “there are established interests”, he commented, people who are favored by the current system will tried to maintain the status quo.
Professor Robin Visser from the University of North Carolina shared her own experiences of witnessing China’s non-stop demolishing and building cycle. She introduced China’s satellite town urbanism ideals and analyzed three case studies of eco-city development in the Chinese urbanization context.
Professor Daniel Sui talked about his study of copycat cities in China; he found that properties with foreign names are sold at higher prices. He worried that copycat cities may give rise to issues such as environmental problems, social division and culture identity.
Professor Kenneth Yeang, a famous architect from Malaysia, showed how various architecture eco-systems work to achieve energy saving. These techniques give new ideas to architecture designs in China.
Reported by: Li Yike
Edited by: Zhang Jiang