1, the connotation of city characteristics
Characteristic is the personality, is the basis for any thing from other things, such as product characteristics, the characteristics of the industry characteristic, terrain features, snack, clothing and so on. City, different Yu enterprise or industry, and products, it is a places (Place), from this aspects departure, a city of features is its content and forms obvious difference Yu other city of personality features, is the city in must of spatio-temporal conditions Xia, social, and economic and environment to itself of survival and development, to then by can reached of civilization means, using natural, and reconstruction natural by created of is different from Yu other city of places and non-places results of integrated performance.
Discussion on the urban characteristics, can sum up into 3 stages. Discussion of the first phase is to place the material space, China as early as in the 1950 of the 20th century and have a discussion on urban feature, but then only architectural forms. Second stage is the discussion of non-material characteristics of the city, such as culture, folklore, spiritual, historical, were increasingly wide attention. In 1988, the construction Ministry to propose clear “under different climatic conditions, different levels of economic development, different national customs, each with their own style of building socialism with Chinese characteristics of cities and towns” ①. Phase III is today the city of non-places “characteristic” gradually received widespread attention. International regional division of labour in the global economic system so that the system of cities or regions in forming a unique urban characteristics of the industry, of course, such characteristics are established on the basis of the characteristics of local places.
From the above relevant connotation of city features, visible to the concerns of urban characteristics in different stages, the characteristics of a city from its “place” traits and “non-places” decisions and embodied by the trait. City of “place” features largely in architectural forms, traditional, physical environment, infrastructure, green space style essays, regional environmental aspects, and “non-places” trait is mainly reflected in the economic structure, economic characteristics, and the talents, knowledge, innovation and other aspects of culture system. China thousands of years of culture details and various city geographical culture, and economic, and natural phase combination and became development features city of important trait, group has distinct local culture features or personality of city stand out, as water city, and coastal city, and plateau city, and mountain haicheng, and desert city, to geographic style for features of city, clothing of are, and crystal of are, and silk of are, and toys of are, to industry and resources for features of city, and Opera of Township, and Nanyin of Township, and pingju of Township, to local culture for features of city quickly for world by understanding, and for formation, and maintained City competition advantage provides has essential of premise conditions.
2, key resources, core competence and competitive advantage of cities
In accordance with the management of competitive advantages in the “resources/capacity” argument of the school, owned by the city’s competitive advantage depends on the resources and capacity.
2.1 key resources in cities and urban competitiveness
Each city has its own unique set of tangible assets and intangible assets, the competitive advantages of the city and directly linked to the resources owned by the city. Urban resources is the city’s most direct source of competitive advantage, but only the key resources to bring the competitive advantages of the city. City competition is the key resource of those city owned, controlled and accessible and provide the basis for the establishment of competitive assets. According to Barney’s views has 3 key resource evaluation standards: ① value. Possession and use of valuable resources, can bring potential competitive advantage to the city. ② scarcity. Only valuable and scarce resources can bring real competitive advantage to enterprises, but the sustainability of competitive advantage, also depends on the resources of the availability of critical resources must be a third property. ③ not imitate and alternative. Has a valuable and scarce resources, the city has won some sort of competitive advantage, this competitive advantage will continue to successfully imitate its competitors or the replacement of such resources. Therefore, valuable, rare and difficult to imitate and alternative resources for competitive advantage.
Critical resource has a non-trading (Untra-deble) ②, almost not imitate other cities, not learning and transferred elsewhere, such as geographical and natural advantages. Key resources are long-term accumulation of historical development, such as the present political, economic, and cultural center, characterized by a certain function of time, in the short term is difficult to catch up in other areas. These features and advantages, especially the comparative advantage of natural endowments, has been the important prerequisite for survival and development of regional economy. While non-critical resources are less monopolized for specific places, it has a strong “liquidity”, especially in today’s highly networked society.
2.2 internal capacity of the city and urban competitiveness
Without resources, competitiveness becomes “make bricks without straw”. But cities with similar resource efficiency and effectiveness in the use of resources often show great differences. Therefore, a city’s success lies not only in its resource-rich but their configuration to hide behind in a variety of resources, the ability to develop, use and protection of resources, this is urban the profound factors of competitive advantage. Ability lies in one of the unique value and competitiveness of the intangible asset of cities together constitute the difficult to imitate, not characteristics of the transaction and transfer.
2.3 key resources, competencies and core competitiveness
Capacity (including core and supporting ability) ability to ultimately promote the integration of urban resources, effective integration of resource consumption of memory and the ability to reasonably add value, increments and collecting resources, and build. Therefore, the city a critical resource and resource integration ability within the interaction of forces, constitute core competitiveness of cities (urban core competition capacity). Core competitiveness formed by comparative advantage and competitive advantage, based on the core competitiveness of the key comparative advantage of the resources given to unique, is the Foundation and based on core competence of urban competitive advantages highlighted the endogenous capacities of the urban economy, is the dominant. By virtue of such efforts, cities in a rapidly changing external environment to maintain its competitive advantage, and became the core competence of urban development “cornerstone”. Therefore, the city decided to have a core competence of urban future development potential, determining the development status of cities over a longer period and the level of competition, while the city core competitiveness is also one of the essential characteristics of which distinguishes it from other cities.
3, the relationship between urban characteristics and competitive advantages of the city
City characteristics depending on the city at one stage owned by the typical “site features” and “non-place characteristics”, while the urban competitiveness depends on the city at one stage owned by “key resource” and “internal capacity (especially core ability)”. In General, the city of “key resource” existing “place” key resource, there are “non-places” critical resources. City of “non-places” critical resources and internal capacity belongs to the city of “non-place characteristics”, that is urban competitive advantages are the key resources and internal capacity city with certain characteristics of necessary and sufficient condition, and other urban features on city competitive advantage over a certain period or the core competitiveness of little significance or function does not directly, but are also pregnant with potential advantage of city competition. Thus, between city features and core competitiveness, competitive advantages are closely related. According to the characteristics of urban “site features” and “non-place characteristics”, “value, scarcity, not imitating, alternative”, the city features for a phase of urban competitive advantages and core competitiveness.
3.1 features “maintain” urban competitive advantages
Competition is a dynamic process, maintaining “advantages” is always relative, fleeting. Only in a variety of environments are always have competitive advantages is the real competitive advantage. Of maintaining the competitive advantage of a city depend on valuable, rare and irreplaceable in the urban cities of combination of characteristics, types and quantities of urban characteristics and formation of urban features, replacement capacity. Among them, types and quantities of urban characteristics of combination is the foundation of cities gain a sustainable competitive advantage, and the replacement of city characteristics change is endogenous dynamics of urban gain a sustainable competitive advantage. In a turbulent environment, urban characteristics (in particular the characteristics of the industry) only through the continued evolution of accumulation and turnover in order to maintain sustainable urban competitive advantages.
3.2 characteristic “shape”, “breed” city’s competitive advantage and advantage
Compared with competitive edge and core competitiveness of cities, city features more complex. In General, the city features not immediately or directly into city’s competitive edge and core competitiveness, its usually urban characteristics and urban development of other common combinations of internal and external factors, “promote” urban competitive advantages of the play, featuring “mold” and “breed” urban advantage or potential advantage.
3.3 characteristic combination “Decides” functions of the urban type
Compared with general classification of cities, urban functions with more comprehensive, more important, to reflect more deeply the essence of the city. Urban functions depend on the city in the territorial division of labour and industry on a global or regional characteristics. In fact, urban functions is the goal of the competition between cities. A city in the competition after a crisis, be looking for a new urban individual character/feature, at which time the city demonstrated function type is a method of defining the urban characteristics. Therefore, the city will try to reflect the specialized functions, they are targeting, bid to become the financial centre, study centre. In this way, cities compete for new city functions between while growing existing and no loss of city functions. Various combinations of factors influencing the development of city competition and city in each city is different, different combinations determine the attractiveness of cities of different types, different number of elements, which also formed the city different economic structures.
An urban economic activities included many functions, along with the deepening of the process of territorial division, differentiation of urban economic functions, functional specialization has been further strengthened. A city can build a variety of industry features, but in the urban function can only highlight one or two main features, forming one or two strong special industries. Germany exhibition city Hannover, printing machinery and university town of Heidelberg, Netherlands port city of Rotterdam, Italy’s fashion city Milan, Switzerland watches Lausanne, is famous for its unique urban competitive advantages. And in Japan, Japan Government in reflections on the first few rounds “national management plans” losses and gains made after: cities should be strengthened on the basis of the original features, disadvantages, strengthening the regional function Division of labor and cooperation. As “Osaka ring” of 3 a commercial city is will “commercial of Osaka”, and “port of Kobe”, and “culture of Kyoto” organic to combination up, makes this 3 a city full awareness to itself of location, and resources, and Humanities, and history, factors and the and surrounding city of collaborative relationship, and this Foundation Shang formation own unique of core competitiveness . throughout international Shang of excellent city, no a not has show of industry features and distinct of city features.
3.4 urban function highlighting the different types of city characteristics
Combination characteristics of urban type and determines the functions of the urban type. Conversely, a city of different stages of development, have different competitive advantages driven force, reflect the different types of urban functions. Therefore, and urban functions, and the type of city features a more prominent role combinations also renders the succession of different characteristics. A case study of Suzhou, Suzhou city stage of competitive advantage can be summarized as the primary factor driving to dominated by raw materials to the characteristic of labour-intensive, relatively dense funds primary factor driving, then the present mainly to investment-driven stage. Where the primary factor driving urban competitive advantages of raw materials as the main stage, handicraft products, occupy an important position, and its typical city features can be “silk” as a delegate. Relatively dense urban competitive advantages in labour and capital-driven stages, Suzhou city features can be “township enterprises” and other features. Since 1992 the capital globalization on competitive advantage of Suzhou city enhanced played a key role in urban development into the “investment-driven” urban competitiveness stage. From the silk handicrafts to township and town enterprises, to a high-tech industry now, gradually formed with Suzhou industry characteristics and succession, and urban succession of competitive advantage and become an important force for economic development. At this stage, and new district, Suzhou Industrial Park “Metro” style as also birth and highlights important characteristics of the city.
Of course, in the course of evolution, other city features also stand out, and at different stages to play a different role in the development of the city. As in in the 1980 of the 20th century, Suzhou of location and traffic, features for Suzhou attract Shanghai, to of industry transfer, play has extremely important of role, and in the 1990 of the 20th century yilai, its location features and traffic features and for Suzhou became global of manufacturing base created has important of premise conditions; also, Suzhou as China and global important of history culture city, its city style features, and history culture features also directly or indirect to support was city of competition advantage. This was borne out in different stages, level of urban characteristics of function, and role may vary.
Apart from investment-driven as an important force of competitive advantage in Suzhou, Suzhou is actively strengthening innovation capacities in their cities. On the introduction of high-tech projects, such as the Park encouraged, Suzhou carrying out scientific research troop training and capacity-building initiatives (such as introduction of graduate school of science and Technology University, Xian Communications University of China). Therefore, accompanied by a driver of competitive advantage upgrade, city of Suzhou is about to reveal new features.
4, based on characteristics of urban competition strategy and policy
Urban characteristic is the key to urban generation, sustained competitive advantage and upgrade resources or core competencies and, therefore, for a city, and to improve the competitiveness of their cities, from the perspective of urban features, developing and implementing appropriate urban competition strategy or business strategy.
4.1 identify urban features, to promote the competitive advantage of play
Under the conditions of competition in the present town, cities ever more on hidden deep in the substance behind the “soft” elements, that is, “non-places” resources and capacity, as they can on the allocation of resources, attract, control, transformation has a critical impact. Therefore, correctly identifying urban characteristics, in particular the city of “soft” urban features, critical for the urban competition strategy formulation.
4.2 protection of urban characteristics in order to maintain competitive advantage
Accompanied by economic reform and acceleration of the pace of economic development, urban characteristic faces test of serious or even fatal damage, such as on the city’s overall style, historical and cultural monuments, urban natural features such as the damage, and the regional culture of the city, such as local drama, local handicraft products, also gradually degraded. In such a situation, urban characteristics is increasing people’s attention.
Under the action of the great force of globalization, local features are gradually fade, or even disappear, making cities the same. However, along with the results of this process and on the other hand is featured on the city started to strengthen the role of local cities. Historical and cultural features such as Suzhou, greatly enhances the business environment and quality of the living environment of the city, which “people, technology, capital” as the important production factors essential to the development of, and rely on the traditional city features, Suzhou in other areas in the increasing integration of the network system of globalization.
Protection of city features in the heart of the city development strategies beyond doubt. One characteristic of a city may directly relevant to the competitive advantage and competitiveness of cities is not very, or a little stage role in urban development, but it also “shaping” a competitive advantage, “breed” new urban competitive advantages, once destroyed, it irreversible.
4.3 cultivating urban characteristic, to upgrade the competitive advantage of driving force
Urban competitive advantages in the different stages require different support, competitive advantage requires a different key and different resources and core competencies. Therefore, key resources and cultivation of core competence and competitive advantage of urban upgrading and directly related to the succession, key resources and cultivation of core competence in a large sense, that is, cultivation of new urban characteristics and formation. New city features, the new city’s competitive advantage is not to say that does not require the original combinations of features, resources and capacity. In fact, the new urban characteristics and competitive advantages are established on the basis of the original features, role links, just changed.