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Title: Winners and losers in urban village development : a study of Wuhan, China
Author: Huang, He
Awarding Body: University of Kent
Current Institution: University of Kent
Date of Award: 2012
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This research analyses urban village redevelopment based on two cases in Wuhan. Urban villages are areas in which land which was once in agricultural use is swallowed up as the city grows, but where the villagers remain part of a different system of land rights which allow them to informally convert agricultural land for industry, commerce and house-building. Whereas previous studies of urban villages have mainly focused on the unplanned nature of this redevelopment and on the housing which is occupied by migrant workers, the present study concerns the redevelopment process itself. It examines how the assets of the urban village are expanded, who instigates the redevelopment process, and with what distributional effects. The process is examined from three perspectives: the privatization of village collective assets, the Chinese urban growth machine, and social movements made up of groups who lose out. The thesis argues that urban village redevelopment involves a process of privatization of collective assets and that, although the village elite leads this process, it is the local state which approves what form it should take. The two cases chosen show contrasting levels of privatization, full and partial. It is argued that full privatization opens up the political opportunity structure, unlike partial privatization, because it encourages divisions among village elites. It is shown that it is the local state, rather than businessmen, who assembles the urban growth machine in China and shapes the distributional outcomes of urban village redevelopment. It is concluded that local officials and real estate developers are outright winners, urban villagers are temporary winners, and Nongzhuanfei people (former villagers who gave up their rights as villagers and now regret it) and migrants are losers in the redevelopment. The vulnerability of this distributional pattern to changes in city policy is pointed out.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available