Search
Close this search box.
Search
Close this search box.

Where are Chinese moving to?

Where are Chinese moving to?

Society

 Nowadays “migration” is becoming more and more popular between cities, all of  these actions aim for better personal development. Especially in China after the 1980s,  people moved to big cities: Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Guangzhou……  The factors are various: better occupation, nursery resource, education resource……or something complicated like personal preference (some reason not relative to finance).

However from my point of view youth could search for opportunities in non first-tier cities, it’s  unnecessary to stay in the big city.  

 We are moving out  

 According to Drozdzewkl (2008) wrote “coastal non-metropolitan youth, and the  manner in which young people articulate their intentions about future out-migration. Out migration from coastal locations – especially by young people.” senior high school  students in one coastal town – Coffs Harbour are the experimental sample because they  have a particularly out-migration’s trend. Leaving home is regarded as a sign of progress  towards adolescence : leaving school, getting married, leaving home and having children.  But sometimes migration doesn’t occur in this linear progression, but more complex  factors.  

 The possible external factors that cause this trend might be “Higher education and  employment”.

Ambitious and skillful youth move to metropolitan centers to seek better  educational and employment opportunities; Second, the prior out-migration of an older  sibling increased the propensity for them to intend to leave. the seemingly booming coastal regions are also experiencing a parallel ‘youth exodus’. 

Drozdzewkl’s survey indicate that, “The availability of tertiary facilities and the diversity of university degrees on offer in bigger cities also influenced the out-migration  intentions of respondents. The appeal of metropolitan centers for higher education was a  definite ‘pull’ factor. Despite the availability of tertiary facilities in Coffs Harbour – a rare  asset for a non-metropolitan coastal location – only 16 percent of students who planned to  remain in Coffs Harbour intended to enroll in higher education.” (Drozdzowki, 2008).  Where do you like more?  

Furthermore, here are some interviews from people’s points. 

 The first interviewee likes to live in a big city. Because it can provide all he wants, his  address near a store, supermarket and nightlife. But he also said the quality of his life is not  enjoyable. “urbexer (China)I always enjoy living in the big cities. As everything is  convenient. However, convenience does not necessarily always equate to a better life. My  flat in Shenzhen is very convenient in terms of location to supermarkets, eateries and  nightlife. However, I would say my quality and enjoyment of life is not good.”(China Daily,  2017). 

 The interview implies that not everyone want to migrate to the big city!
The big city would give people more stress and pressure, 24 hours high density workload, high cost of  living…“holidays (China): I grew up in Zhaoqing, a mid-size city in central Guangdong  province. The air is a lot fresher than most of the big cities.

Moreover, there is also a lower cost of  living, good scenery, a slower pace and more conservative culture. It has most of the  things a city has but is closer to nature. It is also not too far from big cities in case you miss  them.I have lived in a big city, like Guangzhou and Atlanta, for years. I also lived on a small  remote Island in South Georgia for quite some time. The truth is, there are always good  and bad things associated with places. I think if you are curious, energetic, young and  enjoy having a social life, choose big cities; however, if you are quiet, relaxed, like nature, it might be the right choice.

The big city problems and the possibility of small cities.  

As we all know, struggling in a big city is a difficult thing. For example—Beijing: the rental fee  of a house is expensive. Youth might need to pay at least 5000 RMB/Month living in a 50  meter square apartment that is far away from the city center and was decorated 10 years  ago. Moreover, the policies of big cities have exclusiveness without the identity of Beijing. You can  not enjoy medical insurance, and the strange license plates are restricted. Furthermore the  stress would extend to your children, the top school only accepted 15% children which is  very competitive, you need to foster a child in kindergarten. For mental factors: high speed  life rhythm squeezes your time. No time for socializing, making friends, workers like machines  operating 24 hours. It really makes people bald and crazy! 

So if youth quit to go to the first-tier city, will they lose the opportunity? The  answer is “No”.  

For the last few decades in China, the government has encouraged small cities and villages’  renaissance, published countless preference policies: give bonuses to high quality and  technical people, provide financial support, and distribute outstanding communist to local  governments. The Communist Party of China (CPC) has led China into a moderately  prosperous society and achieved comprehensive poverty alleviation. The next goal is rural  revitalization, with the first to lead the latter to the rich, industrial structure reform,  vigorously develop the tertiary industry, and promote urban transformation and upgrading.  So from my perspective, under the positive policy, youth can find opportunities in non metropolitan area, develop their own enterprises.

The rising small cities  

According to He & Li (2018) ,“The two interactive strands, policy mobility and urban  entrepreneurialism, constitute an emerging research area in urban studies. Urban  entrepreneurialism has prevailed since the 1980s when the active, innovative role of local  governments was well documented by a number of researchers in North America and  Western Europe.”  

“Jiyuan sits in northwest Henan, bordering Shanxi Province, and covers an area of 1,931  square km (see Figure 1). Despite its small population of 680,000, Jiyuan’s rate of  urbanization has surpassed 51%, and in 2012 it outperformed all other areas in Henan  Province in terms of GDP per capita. The only sub prefecture-level city in Henan  Province,2 Jiyuan comprises 11 towns and five subdistrict offices, and its development is  deeply associated with its evolving administrative level and position in Henan’s urban  hierarchy.”wrote by He & Li. (2018) 

The positive policy including: “Implementing institutional innovation in SOEs (state-owned enterprise). Promoting the entrepreneurial spirit. And seizing strategic opportunities were the basic characteristics of the burgeoning urban entrepreneurialism in Jiyuan.” (Li & He,  2018).  

“Jiyuan’s evolution presents a valuable opportunity to examine how policy mobility and  local entrepreneurialism are interdigitated with a rising position in the urban hierarchy. As in China, a city’s administrative level dictates the availability of resources for local  development.”(He & Li, 2018). So youth should have a deep consideration about the small  cities’ potential. Not every non first-tier city is a good place to move. The administrative  level and position, the resources they have, the preference policy…… 

The importance of city’s policy  

Another example is a city named “High Point”. Under the frequently globalization context,  small city named “High Point” once known as the “Home Furnishings Capital of the 

World” transformed itself become the world’s most important furniture exposition node and a major design, fashion, and merchandising center.  

“After all, it is a “lower tier” city even in its own state and in a secondary region such as  the U.S. South. Its global activities, it would seem, should “flow up” through “higher tier”  cities that are more central in flows of information, capital, and people.”wrote by  Schlichtman (2019). Then how did the small city of High Point rise?

It needs to transform to a  more innovative and effective path. 

Schlichtman said (2019) “High Point leaders did not capture these global flows by offering  a homogenous, interchangeable nonplace, but rather through employing the city’s place  character cultivated as the 20th century’s home furnishings manufacturing center. Facing  crippling deindustrialization, its leaders did not pursue typical small city strategies such  as “plopping” a generic revenue generator in the downtown after retail and office tenants  departed. Nor did High Point create a residential, retail, and office enclave with “no  historical connection…whatsoever” or theme the downtown with local history for the  consumption of regional visitors.”  

 To sum up, youth can find a potential undeveloped city with positive policy  preference, and make a good choice of leaving the crowded and noisy first-tier city where the  resources have already been occupied. Seizing the opportunity, being creative and critical,  youth can explore the new way ahead to a successful and enjoyable life.

China daily. (2017, Oct 09) Would you like to live in a big city or small town? China daily. http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/opinion/2017-09/09/content_31688246_6.htm 

Where are Chinese moving to?