PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2018, Vol. 37 ›› Issue (6): 750-760.doi: 10.18306/dlkxjz.2018.06.002

• Special Column: Young Geographer Forum • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Progress of research on the growth dynamics and spatial effects of producer services

Fan YANG()   

  1. School of Geography and Planning, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China
  • Received:2018-03-12 Revised:2018-05-30 Online:2018-06-28 Published:2018-06-28
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.41301181


With the shift from Fordist to post-Fordist production, producer services have replaced manufacturing as the central activities in shaping regional economies and reorganizing the city systems of the "post-industrial" societies. Based on a critical evaluation of the existing literature, and an elaboration of the deliveries of the project" A study of the multi-scalar growth dynamics of producer services and its urbanization effects: from the political economy perspective" supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China, this article discusses the applicability of the existing theories when they are used to understand the growth dynamics of producer services and its spatial effects in China. The main findings include: (1) producer services development shows similar pattern to that in the West, but exhibits its unique characteristics as well; (2) due to the distinctive relationships between the state and the market, the state and enterprises, and the central and local governments in China, existing theories and explanations, developed on the basis of the Western experiences, have yielded important insights but at the same time show limitations to account for the uneven growth of producer services in China; and (3) the dramatic expansion of producer services has led to the rapid growth of large cities and the emergence of mega-city regions, which have reshaped the economic space and reorganized the urban system in China. However, different from its Western counterparts, the spatial effects in China need to consider the impacts from the manufacturing industry.

Key words: producer services, growth dynamics, spatial effects, state-market relation