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27-31 August 2019
Poznań, Poland
Europe/Warsaw timezone
programme last update: 23 August 2019
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Contribution Paper (WITHDRAWN)

The Transformation of Waterfront Landscape: A Case Study on the Erhai Lake in Yunnan China


  • Dr. Yu KAO

Primary authors

  • Dr. Yu KAO (The School of Ethnic and Cultural Studies, Dali University)


This paper discusses the occurrence and factors about the protection and governance for Erhai Lake in Dali, Yunnan China. In recent years, Erhai Lake protection has become a public event that has drawn public attention. There have always been disputes between the government and the inn owners. The disputes seem to focus on the conflict, but it is a consequence of long-term local development. From the perspective of urbanization, I explore the developmental process of waterfront landscape change. It can be seen that waterfront areas were originally marginal zone. However, with the tourism and migration fever to Dali, the waterfront landscape has been endowed wih new use value. The findings of the paper are as follows. First, these migrants who are mostly middle-class incomers bring capital investment and pursue particular lifestyle. It leads to the process of rural gentrification. Second, the number of inns nearby the lake keeps increasing year by year, selling waterfront scenery. The commodification of natural landscapes is thus formed. Third, because of the water pollution for Erhai Lake which came from exploing population and inns recently, the government intervened in rectification measures and caused the displacement controversy. I argue that the public event is due to the disintegrative sewage treatment system. Behind the demolition and rebuilding of infrasturcture, it shows the incomplete governmentality and vulnerability of public relations.