Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2022, Vol. 77 ›› Issue (10): 2439-2456.doi: 10.11821/dlxb202210003

• Population Geography • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Spatio-temporal pattern of registered population in Nanjing from 1928 to 2017

XU Di(), XU Yan   

  1. Jiangsu Center for Collaborative Innovation in Geographical Information Resource Development and Application, School of Geography, Nanjing Normal University, Nanjing 210023, China
  • Received:2021-02-07 Revised:2022-05-01 Online:2022-10-25 Published:2022-12-09
  • Supported by:
    Key Project of National Natural Science Foundation of China(41430635)


Based on registered population data, this paper examined a variety of population density models to explore the spatio-temporal pattern of the registered population of Nanjing during the past century. The results showed that: (1) The number of registered residents in Nanjing from 1928 to 2017 showed a flat "S"-shaped growth trend, forming an extensive dispersion with localized concentration types. The population density was the greatest in the Qinhuai River area, which has been the main registered population center. (2) The spatial structure of the registered population included: point-single center, axis-double center, enclave compound-multi center, and radiation-circle polycentric center. (3) The polycentric model, which is based on the central place theory, provided the best explanation for the features of the spatial structure of the registered population. The registered population distribution pattern in Nanjing was attributed to the joint action of four spatial location rules: the distance-decay law, allometric growth effect, spatial polarization characteristic, and regional-edge structure. (4) The transitions in the city during the past century were not a de-urbanization but a temporary fluctuation because of social transformation. Notable differences remained between traditional-Chinese residential center and the central business district.

Key words: city, registered population, density model, spatio-temporal pattern, evolution, Nanjing