PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2010, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (11): 1400-1407.doi: 10.11820/dlkxjz.2010.11.032

• Original Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

The New Progresses and Development Trends in the Research of Physio-Geographical Regionalization in China

GAO Jiangbo, HUANG Jiao, LI Shuangcheng, CAI Yunlong   

  1. College of Urban and Environmental Sciences, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China
  • Received:2010-01-01 Revised:2010-07-01 Online:2010-11-25 Published:2010-11-25


As is well known, there exist similarities and differences among geographical regions, and zonality is a universal theorem governing geographical patterns. Physio-geographical regional system is a hierarchical system, which is formed by division or combination of natural features based on geographic relativity and geographic zonality. Researches on physio-geographical regional system aim at observing and studying natural complex of the earth’s surface, revealing rules of regional differentiations and exploring formation, development, division, combination, relativity and demarcation of natural regions at different scales, from a regional point of view. As a radical method to obtain geographical information, physio-geographical regionalization has always been studied and widely used by geographers. Studies on physio-geographical regionalization in China have made great progress in principle, methodology, and theory since the 1930s. It could provide a scientific basis for social and economic development and planning, and conservation, improvement and rational utilization of natural environment. Based on brief review of physio-geographical regionalization at home and abroad, the paper summarizes the characteristics of researches in recent years: various types of elements; distinct ecologicalization in comprehensive natural regionalization; a complete series of spatial scales; scarce creativity in technology and methods; emphasizing regionalization methodology; enhancing application of regionalization schemes. Then, the paper analyzes academic problems in the present researches: lack of epistemological study; weak methodological study. Finally, the paper explores the prospects of physio-geographical regionalization: continuous increase in requirement at the national level; strengthening the standardization of regionalization, and raises several trends in geographical regionalization.

Key words: China, development trends, new progresses, physio-geographical regionalization