Research on the functional characteristics of China’s urban agglomerations based on the third national economic census data

SONG Jie1 XU Jianbin WANG Zhenbo2,3

(1.School of Geographical and Planning, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou, Guangdong, China 510275)
(2.Institute of Geographical Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China 100101)
(3.Key Laboratory of Regional Sustainable Development Modeling, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing , China 100101)
【Knowledge Link】War Hawk

【Abstract】Urban agglomerations are currently the main driving force for the new-type urbanization development in China. The functional structure and the rationality of urban agglomeration are of great significance to the functional division and industrial development planning in the region. Based on the spatial structure of “5 + 9 + 6” urban agglomerations proposed by the new-type urbanization development report of China (中国新型城镇化发展报告), this paper analyzes the functional characteristics of twenty major urban agglomerations by adopting the optimized Nelson functional classification. The indices of scale benefit, functional strength, functional diversity and functional structure are used to make a cluster analysis of the functional system of urban agglomerations. According to the result, it puts forward some suggestions. The conclusions are as follows: In terms of the functional scale, the national urban agglomeration has a larger scale, the functional scale of urban agglomeration gradually decreases from the coast to inland, and spatial difference of urban agglomeration at the regional level is relatively obvious. In terms of the functional strength of the urban agglomeration, the sequence (from high to low) is the southeast coastal area, the western region, the north China and the central area. In terms of the functional diversity of the urban agglomeration, it is relatively high at the regional level, and the central Guizhou urban agglomeration is low at the prefecture level. According to Ward’s method, the functional system of 20 urban agglomerations is divided into three major categories. Aiming at the different characteristics of each category, it puts forward the corresponding suggestions.

【Keywords】 new-type urbanization; urban function; the third national economic census; urban agglomeration; functional system; structure characteristic; China;


【Funds】 the National Key Research and Development Program of China (2017YFC0505702)

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(Translated by LUO Yiqian)


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This Article



Vol 38, No. 11, Pages 59-67

November 2018


Article Outline



  • 1 Data processing and research method
  • 2 Characteristic analysis of the functional structure and functional system of urban agglomeration
  • 3 Conclusion and discussion
  • References