Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2021, Vol. 76 ›› Issue (4): 1019-1033.doi: 10.11821/dlxb202104016

• Geographical Relationship and Regional Development • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Coagglomeration and spatial relatedness of China's industry

ZHANG Keyun1,2(), ZHU Chunxiao1   

  1. 1. School of Applied Economics, Renmin University of China, Beijing 100872, China
    2. Information Center for Social Sciences, Renmin University of China, Beijing 100872, China
  • Received:2020-02-23 Revised:2020-12-08 Online:2021-04-25 Published:2021-06-25
  • Supported by:
    National Social Science Foundation of China(19CJY002)


In order to promote the formation of a regional economic location with complementary advantages and high-quality development, it is necessary to examine the spatial pattern of Chinese industry from the perspective of industrial relatedness. Agglomeration is a common spatial pattern of industry. We construct two indices by combining coagglomeration and input-output linkages to analyze spatial relatedness. The first index is used to measure relatedness of agglomerated industries (hereafter ACX index). The second index is used to measure agglomeration of related industries (hereafter CXI index). Then, we use two-digit data from Chinese industrial enterprises database and measure the proposed indices to answer the following 2 questions: (1) whether the spatial relatedness is different at different spatial scales, and (2) what makes the difference in spatial relatedness. We find that more coagglomerations in a region do not mean that the ACX index is large. The ACX index of Chinese industry presents an inverted U-shaped distribution from 2003 to 2013. Comparing different spatial scales, we find that there is a positive correlation between the ACX index and size of the researched space, however, there is a negative correlation between ACX index and size of the basic unit. Comparing similar spatial scales, we find the ACX index is larger in city clusters and the Yangtze Economic Belt. These differences are mainly due to the existing regional governance system, the industrial composition of the region and external shocks. Different regions and industrial composition will evolve into different industrial spatial patterns. Therefore, it is necessary to create networks of cities and towns based on city clusters and the Yangtze River Economic Belt, so as to enhance industrial division and urban cooperation. In this way, the optimal regional economic location and coordinated regional development would be achieved.

Key words: coagglomeration, EG index, industrial relatedness, spatial scale, regional economic location