Date of Award

Spring 2011

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Graduate Group

City & Regional Planning

First Advisor

Gary Hack


Over the last two decades, High-Technology Industrial Development Zone (HIDZ) has become an important strategy for urban development in China. Modeled on earlier examples in the US and Asia, they have developed in unique ways in China because of the rapid urbanization, large-scale sites, and trend toward high-technology-based new townships or technopoles. While the 84 current national HIDZs widely use planning strategies in their government-guided development and construction, the impact of these planning strategies remains is not well understood. This dissertation explores how and to what extent planning and management strategies impact the outcomes of HIDZs. It examines closely four case examples (Beijing Zhongguancun Science Park, Shanghai Zhangjiang High-Technology Park, Suzhou Industrial Park, and Shenzhen High-Technology Industrial Park). The study reveals the diverse and sometimes competing purposes of national HIDZs, ranging from stimulating innovation and improvement of products, to serving as an economic anchor and a tool for attracting international firms. The research demonstrates the importance of adopting a sustainable strategy for development of HIDZs that it guides place-making, regulates the land development process, improves the quality of the environment, facilitates cooperation among various sectors, and attracts investment. It explores the versatility of planning approaches, identifies a series of key factors that shape planning strategies, and provides suggestions for tailoring the approach to planning to local resources and conditions.

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