SIEM / Spaces of International Economy and Management

Events & Conferences


Report on the 17th research meeting

Takehiko Fujii (University of Tokyo) gave a speech at the SIEM Research Group meeting on September 30th, 2017 at Mie University. The presentation was entitled "Location Transfers of Geography-related IT Industries - a case study in China since 1990". His study focuses on geography as an industry especially in the information technology (IT) entrepreneurship field, and has observed the history of its location transfers in China mainly since 1990' when the commercialization of its national economy has rapidly introduced and developed. Geography-related IT industries contain not only geographical information systems (GIS) and other spatial fields but also wide range of value chains related map. The upstream consists of raw materials such as satellite imageries, aerial photos and surveyed data including global positioning systems (GPS). The midstream is as a manufacturing function to make maps from the raw materials. The downstream are services to make use of maps such as GIS and car navigation systems (CNS) as well as other online mapping services including the Google Map. During the cold war era after the world war II, those industries had been opt to move to the inlands in the continental nations including the United States (US) and India, where have certain distances from the front of their potential enemy nations. China had also followed the moves and their national survey and mapping production centers have been located in Xi'an, Chengdu and Harbin. In 1990', after the cold war was over, the commercialization of defense technologies such as internet and GPS have begun and diffused globally, which means those industries had been rather research and development (R&D) oriented. There the proximity between university as a R&D center and its spin-off start-up private companies had been paid attention as so-called "Stanford University - Silicon Valley model". In China, geography-related educational and R&D functions had been mainly concentrated on Wuhan Survey and Mapping University (integrated to Wuhan University nowadays) in Wuhan, Hubei province. Technology-oriented start-ups had been born and grown there. In the first half of the 2000' decade, affected by collapse of the IT bubble in US, those industries had not looked so distinguished in globally partly because of shrinking inflow from the capital markets. China had showed agglomeration of entrepreneurs to the eastern coastal metropolitan areas where had had affluent capitals, labor markets and business opportunities. They are greater Shenzhen, greater Shanghai and greater Beijing. In the latter half of the 2000' decade, China had caught up the global trend of growth in the nations' capitals where the proximity to the regulators and budgeting central governments shows some conveniences to the industries. Since the domestic market mainly in government sectors had grown partly thanks to the national policies and projects which had developed backward but vast western inlands, those supplies of business opportunities had showed the distinguished growths of start-up businesses in Beijing, the capital of China.