Katarzyna Golik

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Gentrification of post-nomadic cities in Inner Asia. Case studies of Ulaanbaatar and Nantun (Ewenki Autonomous Banner)

This paper presents a preliminary study on the demographic and economic changes of the post-nomadic suburbs of Mongolia’s Ulaanbaatar and of Nantun (with Hailar) in the PR of China. They both result in changes in architecture, followed by some special movement of the communities. However, the specific element is the class dynamics. While usually, gentrification’s beneficiaries are the middle class the cost of lower-class’ displacement, in both studied cases there are exceptions. In Nantun there are the subalterns, who benefit from the top-down public investments linked with the compensations for the land or the groups under the welfare programs, who receive apartments at reduced prices. For the UB there used to be cases also linked to proper land-rend evaluation when some of the former residents could have remained. Another specific situation is, what I called here a ‘spot gentrification’, when a family or a small community upgrade their neighbourhood and dwellings. This element, together with the ‘eco-gardens’, suggest that transition in the ger districts might go beyond common gentrification models.

The gentrification of newly urbanised post-nomadic areas although is multi-dimentional concept, can be seen as largely economic-driven process.

The policy of local government also plays an important role, sometimes in an aspect of creating an operational framework, like urban planning or local regulation. The authorities can also take an active role in city development.

The study is based on the fieldwork in 2007 and 2019.

Katarzyna Golik (Polish Academy of Sciences) –orientalist and economist. She currently holds a position of statistical analyst and a scholar at the Polish Academy of Sciences.

Katarzyna received a Ph.D. in political science an MA in Mongolian and Tibetan Studies from the University of Warsaw, and a BA in Banking and Finance from the Warsaw College of Economics. She held scholarships in Mongolia and China (Dalian and Hohhot) and was awarded multiple grants for young scholars by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of Poland.

Interests include: Education of national minorities in the People’s Republic of China, especially of the Mongols in different regions, political and economic transition in the Republic of Mongolia and Northern China, Creation of contemporary Mongolian culture in China, Nationality processes in Northern China, Sino-Mongolian economic relations.


Polish Academy of Sciences