Town Planning Review

The implications of rapid economic growth in China for spatial development in metropolitan city-regions in Europe

Town Planning Review (2008), 79, (2-3), 331–346.

Abstract

Europe's metropolitan city-regions face considerable challenges from China's rapid economic growth. This article first reviews the development of metropolitan concentration, spacial specialisation and fragmentation and polarisation in Europe. It then considers the nature of specific Chinese challenges to these metropolitan areas (such as the implications for the labour market, motor vehicle production location and tourism), before exploring three scenarios: 'China after the Olympics', 'Slowpark Europe' and 'Chinese–European partnership'. The article ends with some policy conclusions, including the need for better understanding, the development of risk-minimising strategies to balance local, regional and global concerns, and exploring new paths to a socially as well as economically sustainable future through the European 'social model'.

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Author details

Kunzmann, Klaus