PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2016, Vol. 35 ›› Issue (9): 1049-1061.doi: 10.18306/dlkxjz.2016.09.001

• Reviews •     Next Articles

Progress and prospects of micro-scale research on rural residential land in China

Bailin ZHANG1, Weimin CAI1,*(), Fengrong ZHANG2, Guanghui JIANG3, Xiaoke GUAN4   

  1. 1. School of Management, Tianjin Polytechnic University, Tianjin 300387, China
    2. School of Resources and Environmental Sciences, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193, China
    3. School of Resources Science and Technology, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China
    4. Social Development Research Center of Zhengzhou University of Light Industry, Zhengzhou 450002, China
  • Received:2016-04-01 Revised:2016-07-01 Online:2016-09-20 Published:2016-09-20
  • Contact: Weimin CAI
  • Supported by:
    Foundation: National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.41271111, No.41671519, No.41301189, No.41501189


In the process of rapid industrialization and urbanization, important transformations have taken place in the development of rural China, which resulted in the diversification and differentiation of rural residential land use. This change demands immediate micro-scale research on the evolution of rural settlements. Existing micro-scale research on rural settlements has focused on their structural and functional characteristics and change, characteristics and mechanism of rural hollowing, and structure and change of the cultural landscape of rural settlements. Rural residential land use is related to the change of livelihoods of rural households. In urban-rural fringe and economically developed areas, non-farming employment of rural residents prompts the diversification as well as non-agriculturalization of rural residential land. In traditional agricultural regions, a large number of laborers flows to cities and towns, leading to the disused of rural residential land. Microscopic study of rural residential land has mainly focused on the description and explanation of related phenomena. It should be gradually expanded and deepened to practical applications in the future. Research on the transformation of rural residential land and patterns of change, the effect on society, economy, and environment, and the reconstruction of rural settlements for the implementation of national development strategies should be promoted in order to provide decision support for rural residential land consolidation and contracted land registration under the background of new urbanization.

Key words: rural residential land, micro-scale, progress and prospect, China