BEIJING: CHINA’S HAPHAZARD LUNGE INTO THE FUTURE

Open Access
Author:
Wang, Xiaomeng
Area of Honors:
Geography
Degree:
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Lakshman S Yapa, Thesis Supervisor
  • Roger Michael Downs, Honors Advisor
Keywords:
  • China
  • Beijing
  • economy
  • modernization
  • Olympics
  • urbanization
  • migration
  • air
  • pollution
  • water
  • satellite
  • towns
  • poverty
Abstract:
Beginning in 1979, China left behind the old socialist model and put into place reforms towards a market-oriented economy. In the following three decades, China has experienced urban and economic growth at an unprecedented rate in the world to become one of the most powerful nations in the 21st century. China’s transformation is especially apparent in Beijing, its capital. Residents of the city have seen firsthand dramatic changes to the city appearance and their way of life within the span of a few decades however, due to its emphasis on growth, Beijing has neglected to keep other issues in check. Currently, the city faces growing social and environmental concerns, such as the increasing income disparity, severe ecological deterioration and stagnating development of satellite towns. These conditions pose a serious threat to future development and growth. This paper provides a detailed analysis of the economic growth and urbanization of Beijing, as well as how they have contributed to its current concerns.