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Journal Article

Urbanization and spillover effect for three megaregions in China: Evidence from DMSP/OLS nighttime lights


Fraedrich,  Klaus F.
MPI for Meteorology, Max Planck Society;

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Zhang, X., Guo, S., Guan, Y., Cai, D., Zhang, C., Fraedrich, K. F., et al. (2018). Urbanization and spillover effect for three megaregions in China: Evidence from DMSP/OLS nighttime lights. Remote Sensing, 10: 1888. doi:10.3390/rs10121888.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0002-B94F-6
Urbanization drives human social development and natural environmental changes and shows complex implications for sustainability and challenges of future development, particularly in emerging countries. While extensive studies focus on extracting urban areas more precisely, less attention has been devoted to understand megaregion evolution and its related socioeconomic processes, not by socioeconomic statistics, but by comparing remote sensing based spatiotemporal evolution and the related spillover effect. Three main megaregions (with large area, high population and total gross domestic product) in China are selected for the analysis of development changes in an urbanization (magnitude, development)-diagram, of growth pattern changes based on Gravity Center and weighted Standard Deviation Ellipses and of the megaregionsrsquo; spillover effect. Employing the spatiotemporally continuous lighted areas (DN ge; 12) from the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program/Operational Linescan System (DMSP/OLS) nighttime signal (1992ndash;2013) to the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei (BTH), the Yangtze River Delta (YRD), and the Pearl River Delta (PRD) leads to the following results: (i) Developments in the (magnitude, development)-diagram indicate 25.97, 45.95, and 39.10 of the first (high urbanization, fast development) class of the BTH, YRD, and PRD megaregions are rapidly developing into highly urbanized regions. The first class may slow down in the future like the second (high urbanization, slow development) class acting from 1992 to 2013, and the third (moderate urbanization, fast development) class shows potential to become the first class in the future. (ii) The original core function zones of YRD and PRD have highly developed till 1992 and expanding out with fast development from 1992 to 2013. Contrarily, BTH indicates more fast development toward the original core function zones while spatial expansion. (iii) The gravity distance evolution of the three megaregions shows a tendency towards the geometric distance 2013. However, YRD and PRD (BTH) indicate a light intensity expansion (concentration). This may relate to a positive spillover effect of YRD and PRD upon their neighbor cities, with the strongest signal in the early 21st Century and thereafter adjusting and followed by another positive spillover.