Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2007, Vol. 62 ›› Issue (6): 631-639.doi: 10.11821/xb200706008

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Core-per iphery Spatial Structur e and Its Evolution of Tourism Region in Sichuan Province

SHI Chunyun1,2, ZHANG Jie1, YOU Haimei2, LI Donghe1,3, WANG Yan1   

  1. 1. School of Geographic and Oceanographic Sciences, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210093, China;
    2. School of Urban and Environmental Sciences, Xuzhou Normal University, Xuzhou 221116, Jiangsu, China;
    3. Department of Tourism Management, Anhui University, Hefei 230039, China
  • Received:2006-09-04 Revised:2007-01-08 Online:2007-06-25 Published:2007-06-25
  • Supported by:

    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.40371030


Core-periphery model is generally used as a theory to interpret the spatial discrepancy of regional development and evolvement pattern of regional economic structure. Core-periphery theory has been rarely put into the tourism research both at home and abroad. Previous work of empirical researches undertaken in tourism field has mainly focused on the economic inequality and developmental relationships between the core and the periphery tourism regions. However, the form and its evolvement of the spatial core-periphery structure are still relatively rare up to now. Therefore combined with the analytical framework of tourism geography, the dynamic process, development stages and the evolvement of the spatial structure are explored in this paper by using analytical methods of urban geography based on a case study of Sichuan province, which is rich in tourism resources in Southwest China. Findings of primary city distribution and rank-size distribution suggest that the spatial pattern of tourism cities in Sichuan province takes on a typical core-periphery structure. Chengdu, capital of Sichuan province and the biggest tourism city, is the primary tourism city and is therefore being the core city while others are peripheries of the tourism industry. Moreover, the dynamic evolvement of the spatial pattern in Sichuan belongs to the spatial polarization stage. Transportation, resource endowment, economic development, location and spatial position, urban size, function and urbanization are the important factors related to this core-periphery structure by correlation analysis. Finally, sub-core tourism cities, i.e. the second core cities such as Leshan, Aba and Mianyang can be discovered by cluster analysis. Nevertheless, these sub-core tourism cities have a long way to go in terms of the tourism industry.

Key words: core-periphery theory, spatial structural form, spatial dynamicprocess, Sichuan province