Globalization and Adaptation - A Research of Imported Architecture in China During 1978 - 2008

Project: Research

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Since enacting an open door policy in 1978, China has increasingly been experiencing the influences of globalization in many fields, including architectural design. Architectural and urban design by overseas professionals has now become an integral part of China's architectural landscape. The trend of importing architecture can be seen in numerous settings, from foreign invested projects to governmental "image" (facelifting) projects; from hotels and offices to concert halls, convention centers and housing; and from coastal cities to the hinterland. The 2008 Olympic Games and other high-profile events are further adding to China’s development as an arena for leading international architects. This busy importation of architecture has attracted a lot of attention, surprises, criticisms and worries. However, no systematic study on this phenomenon has been done as of yet. The aim of this study is to explore and analyze imported architecture in China and address such issues as:How have overseas designs been brought into China, and how has the trend evolved over the past quarter of a century?How are overseas designs helping the modernization* of China, and what can we learn from this process?What are the positive and negative aspects of importing foreign designs?What are local Chinese responses to imported architecture in China?Answering these questions will offer a clear picture of imported international design projects in China and provide a vivid case study of globalization in the field of architecture. The study will also deliver a source of practical references for Chinese and international architects, developers, government officials and the general public.* "Modernization" was the development goal set up by the Chinese government in 1980. It includes the modernization of industry, agriculture, defense, science and technology.


Project number9041420
Grant typeGRF
Effective start/end date1/12/0815/12/11