Jianfeng Wu: Urban Agglomeration
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Urban Agglomeration and Local Economic Growth: The role of China's industrial parks policy

Researches has proven that industrial parks play a key role in China’s economy. Putting their critical facilitation in the urban growth aside, it cannot be denied that some parks are successful but others are not still. This seminar, held in Room 710, Fanhai Building, on 29nd, Dec. 2015, had the honor to invite Dr. Jianfeng Wu of CCES of Fudan University, to present his latest coauthered work on the relationship between China’s urban agglomeration and local economic growth in which the role of industrial park policy should be identified and evaluated. Professor Zhao Chen, Professor Ming Lu, Professor Xiaohuan Lan, Professor Yan Zhang and Dr. Ting Li with some of the PhD students participated in this seminar.

  

This research focused on two questions. “On the one hand, we intent to test whether the creation of industrial parks is associated with increased production and consumption agglomerations based on key outcome indicators. On the other hand, we are also curious about the heterogeneity of such effects along the various dimensions of the parks.” He said.

Dr. Wu established a dataset which consisted of 110 state- and provincial-level industrial parks located in Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Shenzhen, Chengdu, Dalian, Wuhan and Xi’an. “The manufacture firm data come from the Annual Survey of Industrial Firms by the National Bureau of Statistics of China from 1998-2007. Plus, we geocode firms in GIS maps using the address information.” He said.

In his basic empirical model, Dr. Wu employed the boundary of a park’s impact area as the dependent variable. The independent variables were composed of the dummy of the existence of a park, and different rings centering around the park. “We use DID strategy because we are eager to know the different repercussions of the park’s impacted firms compared with unaffected firms. Besides, we need to evaluated the differences of relevant indicators brought by the establishment of the park.” He introduced. Building on that, Dr. Wu took use of IV and matched DID to assure the accuracy of the estimated results.

To sum up, Dr. Wu empirically examined how the industry parks stimulated local economic growth and diversify the greater metropolitan areas activity as an emerging sub-center. “We find after the establishment of these parks, the productivity and wage premium have been raised. Firms inside the park enjoy a higher employment density compared with the outside firms. They are capable to attract new residential construction and therefore raise home prices, which boosts the gentrification of the local retail and consumer shopping opportunities.” He said. Meanwhile, Dr. Wu confirmed the existence of the heterogeneity effects in terms of the cohort and age of the park, and the park’s own composition of firms and industries.

 

By SHI Shuo

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