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City-regionalism in the Yangtze River Delta

In May 2017, we were delighted to host a visit by Dr Yi Li, Associate Professor at the School of Public Administration, Hohai University, China.

Dr Yi Li
Dr Yi Li, Associate Professor at the School of Public Administration, Hohai University, China

Dr Li's research focuses on city-regional development and governance in China, and in a lunchtime seminar she presented findings from her most recent paper, Understanding city-regionalism in China: Regional cooperation in the Yangtze River Delta.

This paper, co-authored with Professor Fulong Wu of UCL, explores the impact on city-region integration of two different regional-scale mechanisms - the top-down state-mandated process and the bottom-up process initiated by local governments - and of the associated internal politics that these generate.

Dr Li argued that China’s territorial administrative divisions are central to understanding the efforts to construct city-regions, as well as to understanding the failure to create a new subnational state space. This research echoes wider debates on taking the experiences of the global South more seriously in order to contribute to Western-dominated urban and regional theory.

An audio and slide recording of the presentation.