PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2021, Vol. 40 ›› Issue (1): 15-27.doi: 10.18306/dlkxjz.2021.01.002

• Rural-Urban Integration Development in the New Era • Previous Articles     Next Articles

From governance to rural-urban co-governance: Research frontiers, trends, and the Chinese paths

YE Chao(), YU Jie, ZHANG Qingyuan*(), ZHU Xiaodan   

  1. School of Geography Science, East China Normal University, Shanghai 200241, China
  • Received:2020-07-21 Revised:2020-10-03 Online:2021-01-28 Published:2021-03-28
  • Contact: ZHANG Qingyuan;
  • Supported by:
    Major Program of National Social Science Foundation of China(19ZDA086)


Governance has become an important theoretical and practical issue of multi-disciplinary concern. In the context of rapid urbanization and wide rural-urban disparity, rural-urban governance is particularly important for China. Based on the Chinese and international governance theories, the key aspects of governance include: an open system, self-organization, and the interactive relationship between power and rights. Internationally the research frontier focuses on the governance of social-ecological systems, while urban governance has grown significantly, and rural governance has also risen in recent years. The research trend and policy evolution of governance in China indicate that China has undergone a comprehensive transformation from management to governance by top-level design, and rural-urban governance is becoming a key issue. The main path of China's rural-urban governance in the future lies in three aspects. First, it is necessary to shift from power-oriented to rights-oriented governance. Second, equal attention needs to be paid to both ecological environment and social governance instead of focusing only on social, single-dimensional, and urban governance systems, and form a rural-urban co-governance system with the participation of multiple subjects. Third, it should be launched to assist rural and urban vulnerable groups actively. Rural-urban co-governance will become a new growth point for theories, and multi-disciplinary, multi-subject, and multi-department collaboration is much needed.

Key words: governance, urban, rural, rural-urban co-governance, urbanization