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postgraduate thesis: Urban governance and cultural heritage conservation in Guangzhou

TitleUrban governance and cultural heritage conservation in Guangzhou
Authors
Advisors
Advisor(s):Lee, FYS
Issue Date2014
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
Citation
Lee, K. A. [李家賢]. (2014). Urban governance and cultural heritage conservation in Guangzhou. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR. Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org/10.5353/th_b5312351
AbstractThe pursuit of cultural heritage conservation is particularly problematic in China as the country has been undergoing substantial changes in its governance processes in the post-reform era. As the regime becomes less authoritarian and more pluralized, a multitude of stakeholders (both state and non-state), are now involved in promoting, constructing, challenging and safeguarding a variety of meanings and values in heritage. This thesis incorporates an urban governance lens to examine the policy and practical problems in conserving urban built heritage in contemporary China. This approach offers a new perspective in understanding the distribution of authority and power between the state and society as well as its effect on the management of public affairs. The reconfigurations of the role of the state, market and civil society have ushered in a new phase of urban politics that have enormous implications for built heritage conservation practices. As a result of reforms, conventional stakeholders have assumed new roles in politics; meanwhile, an increasing variety and number of new stakeholders connected to the non-state sector have also emerged; and their relationships and interactions with the state have become increasingly complex. An urban governance perspective draws attention to the new arrangements embedded in these relationships, which have profoundly impacted the decision-making processes in conservation, re-shaped the interpretation of heritage values, re-defined the scope of heritage and re-thought the use of heritage in Guangzhou. By employing a case-study approach, this thesis provides a detailed analysis of the conservation efforts undertaken by various stakeholder groups in Guangzhou in the post-reform era. Guangzhou is one of the country’s designated historic cities; it is also the provincial capital of Guangdong and has experienced rapid marketization over the past three decades. Three district-specific cases are selected to provide an in-depth analysis on the changing relationships among concerned stakeholders. The case of Shamian Island demonstrates the rigidity and constraints of central-local relation; while the case of Xinhepu discloses the evolving state-market relation. Finally, the case of Enning Road examines the rise of non-state stakeholders and their power struggle against the state. These cases were selected because each of them covers a particular heritage aspect that is directly related to the three-pronged national conservation hierarchical framework. The findings in the three cases respectively reveal the intricacies of conservation politics: the bureaucratic politics in the management and conservation of designated heritage; the struggle between state and society over what legitimate type of history is considered as “national” history and the maintenance of its local significance; and the operation-cum-conservation of heritage assets by market forces in China’s transitional economy. The findings of this thesis contribute to a broadened understanding of the changing roles and functions of the state, market and civil society in China’s transitional period; thus revealing the major deficiencies in the existing institutional and managerial frameworks for built heritage conservation in Guangzhou. This thesis also documents the impacts and outcomes of the actions of various state and non-state stakeholders on the prospect of built heritage conservation at an urban scale in China.
DegreeDoctor of Philosophy
SubjectCultural property - Protection - China - Guangzhou Shi
Dept/ProgramGeography
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/206346

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.advisorLee, FYS-
dc.contributor.authorLee, Ka-yin, Anna-
dc.contributor.author李家賢-
dc.date.accessioned2014-10-23T23:14:28Z-
dc.date.available2014-10-23T23:14:28Z-
dc.date.issued2014-
dc.identifier.citationLee, K. A. [李家賢]. (2014). Urban governance and cultural heritage conservation in Guangzhou. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR. Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org/10.5353/th_b5312351-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/206346-
dc.description.abstractThe pursuit of cultural heritage conservation is particularly problematic in China as the country has been undergoing substantial changes in its governance processes in the post-reform era. As the regime becomes less authoritarian and more pluralized, a multitude of stakeholders (both state and non-state), are now involved in promoting, constructing, challenging and safeguarding a variety of meanings and values in heritage. This thesis incorporates an urban governance lens to examine the policy and practical problems in conserving urban built heritage in contemporary China. This approach offers a new perspective in understanding the distribution of authority and power between the state and society as well as its effect on the management of public affairs. The reconfigurations of the role of the state, market and civil society have ushered in a new phase of urban politics that have enormous implications for built heritage conservation practices. As a result of reforms, conventional stakeholders have assumed new roles in politics; meanwhile, an increasing variety and number of new stakeholders connected to the non-state sector have also emerged; and their relationships and interactions with the state have become increasingly complex. An urban governance perspective draws attention to the new arrangements embedded in these relationships, which have profoundly impacted the decision-making processes in conservation, re-shaped the interpretation of heritage values, re-defined the scope of heritage and re-thought the use of heritage in Guangzhou. By employing a case-study approach, this thesis provides a detailed analysis of the conservation efforts undertaken by various stakeholder groups in Guangzhou in the post-reform era. Guangzhou is one of the country’s designated historic cities; it is also the provincial capital of Guangdong and has experienced rapid marketization over the past three decades. Three district-specific cases are selected to provide an in-depth analysis on the changing relationships among concerned stakeholders. The case of Shamian Island demonstrates the rigidity and constraints of central-local relation; while the case of Xinhepu discloses the evolving state-market relation. Finally, the case of Enning Road examines the rise of non-state stakeholders and their power struggle against the state. These cases were selected because each of them covers a particular heritage aspect that is directly related to the three-pronged national conservation hierarchical framework. The findings in the three cases respectively reveal the intricacies of conservation politics: the bureaucratic politics in the management and conservation of designated heritage; the struggle between state and society over what legitimate type of history is considered as “national” history and the maintenance of its local significance; and the operation-cum-conservation of heritage assets by market forces in China’s transitional economy. The findings of this thesis contribute to a broadened understanding of the changing roles and functions of the state, market and civil society in China’s transitional period; thus revealing the major deficiencies in the existing institutional and managerial frameworks for built heritage conservation in Guangzhou. This thesis also documents the impacts and outcomes of the actions of various state and non-state stakeholders on the prospect of built heritage conservation at an urban scale in China.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.publisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)-
dc.relation.ispartofHKU Theses Online (HKUTO)-
dc.rightsThe author retains all proprietary rights, (such as patent rights) and the right to use in future works.-
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License-
dc.subject.lcshCultural property - Protection - China - Guangzhou Shi-
dc.titleUrban governance and cultural heritage conservation in Guangzhou-
dc.typePG_Thesis-
dc.identifier.hkulb5312351-
dc.description.thesisnameDoctor of Philosophy-
dc.description.thesislevelDoctoral-
dc.description.thesisdisciplineGeography-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-
dc.identifier.doi10.5353/th_b5312351-

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