TROPICAL GEOGRAPHY ›› 2019, Vol. 39 ›› Issue (2): 206-217.doi: 10.13284/j.cnki.rddl.003115

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Spatial-Temporal Changes and Mechanism of Land Use in the Pearl River Delta from the Perspective of Property Rights Alteration: A Case Study of Nanhai District in Foshan City

Liu Yihua1, Chen Qixian2 and Lin Huarong1   

  1. (1. School of Geographical Sciences, Guangzhou University, Guangzhou 510006, China; 2. Guangdong Huayuan Engineering Co. Ltd., Guangzhou 510335, China )
  • Online:2019-03-05 Published:2019-03-05

Abstract: This article is a case study of Nanhai District, Foshan City, which examined the district’s spatiotemporal changes in land use and how it has been affected by the land property rights reform since 1987. It analyzed data from a variety of sources, including Remote Sensing, land use survey, and existing land use maps, and employed quantitative as well as qualitative methods, such as human-computer interactive interpretation of RS images, landscape index, field research, and case studies. This study found the following: 1) The changes in land property rights in Nanhai District occurred in three phases: the paid land contracting system (1987-1992), the land joint stock cooperative system (1993-2002), and the government-led system in the face of land scarcity and the “Three Old” re-development policies (2003-2013). These three phases showed a change in the trend of land property rights from “land ownership-oriented” to “land utilization-oriented,” which is the result of market demand and the development of efficient resource utilization, and indicates a process during which land is converted from resources to assets and capital. 2) In Nanhai District, changes in land property rights and the spatiotemporal changes in land use show significant correlation and regularity. The speed, intensity, and structure of change during different periods of land use evidently influenced by the changes in land property rights, and the spatial structure of land use has also featured changes over three phases, from “agricultural land agglomeration,” to “fragmented structure of rural industrialization,” and eventually to the “coexistence of agglomeration and fragmentation.” 3) The changes in land use in Nanhai District are caused by the cumulative effect of several internal and external factors, which are mainly inducement, guidance, engine, and regulation mechanisms. Development of the market economy, rapid urbanization, and the scarcity of land resources have triggered the commodity nature and the pursuit of the capital function of collective land; these goals have been achieved by reforming the land property rights system. The land property rights system is the underlying cause of changes in land use. The extensive expansion and spatial fragmentation of construction land that is common in Nanhai District is the direct consequence of the collective land shareholding system reform and decentralized land property rights management. This feature is common nationwide in other semi-urbanized areas, indicating a similar formation mechanism on the macro level. The behaviors and games among various micro-stakeholders led by changes in the land property rights structure is the internal driving force of land-use changes, and directly influence changes in land use through land income distribution. 4) The case study of LJ Village indicates that the changes in the subject of land use right from singular to plural, the diversification of land income sources, and the increasing complexity and optimization of the land property rights structure together form an integrated property right system and affect the changes in the land use structure. Currently, the source of many land use problems is the fragmentation of rural collective land property rights. In the processes of future economic transition and land redevelopment, the keys to achieving efficient land use and spatial optimization are balancing the demands of various shareholders and constructing a profit-sharing mechanism in the face of new trends in land property rights changes.

Key words: land property rights, land use, landscape index, Nanhai District, Foshan City