Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2015, Vol. 70 ›› Issue (11): 1788-1799.doi: 10.11821/dlxb201511008

• Orginal Article • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Urban land-use efficiency, spatial spillover, and determinants in China

Liangjian WANG(), Hui LI, Chuan SHI   

  1. College of Economics and Trade, Hunan University, Changsha 410079, China
  • Received:2015-01-27 Revised:2015-05-28 Online:2015-11-20 Published:2015-11-20
  • Supported by:
    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.41371184;Soft Science Research Program of Hunan Province's Land and Resources Department, No.2014-15


The paper estimates urban land-use efficiency, investigates its spillover effect, and analyses its determinants based on stochastic frontier production function and spatial lag model, by using city-level panel data of 282 cities during 2003-2012. The empirical results support that: first, there exists an obvious spatial and temporal variation in land-use efficiency among the 282 cities from 2003-2012. For example, the land-use efficiency indices in most of the cities were below 0.8 in 2003. However, these indices rose up to 0.8 in 2012. The cities with high land-use efficiency are concentrated in the Pearl River Delta, Hunan province, Hubei province, southern Henan province, eastern Anhui province and the junction between Shandong and Jiangsu provinces. Cities located in central China are most efficient in land use, while northeastern cities are most inefficient ones. The land-use efficiency in northwestern cities grows fastest while that in southwest cities slowest. Second, the spillover effect of land-use efficiency is significantly positive, which is higher in central, northeastern and northwestern than in southeastern cities. The spatial spillovers might originate from the demonstration effect of land-use efficiency through technological diffusion and industrial transfer. Third, there exist similarities and differences in determinants of urban land-use efficiency across cities and regions. Overall, transportation infrastructure, information technology, saving level positively affect urban land-use efficiency, while foreign direct investment, or loans do not significantly increase the urban land-use efficiency. The population density affects land-use efficiency convexly in eastern and southwestern cities and concavely in northeastern cities. Fiscal expenditure exerts significant positive influence on land-use efficiency in eastern, northeastern, northwestern, and southwestern cities. The ratio of college students to population positively influences urban land-use efficiency in eastern cities, while negatively in other ones. The medical care affects urban land-use efficiency negatively over the whole country but not in northwest China. Land marketization is conducive to urban land-use efficiency in eastern, central and southwestern China. The influence of land type on land-use efficiency varies across different regions and cities.

Key words: urban land-use efficiency, spatial spillovers, stochastic frontier function, spatial lag model, China