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Spatial evolution of the US urban system

Ioannides, Yannis and Overman, Henry G. ORCID: 0000-0002-3525-7629 (2004) Spatial evolution of the US urban system. Journal of Economic Geography, 4 (2). pp. 131-156. ISSN 1468-2702

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We examine spatial features of the evolution of the US urban system usingUS Census data for 1900 – 1990 with non-parametric kernel estimation techniques that accommodate the complexity of the urban system. We consider spatial features of the location of cities and city outcomes in terms of population and wages. Our results suggest a number of interesting puzzles. In particular, we find that city location is essentially a random process and that interactions between cities do not help determine the size of a city. Both of these findings contradict our theoretical priors about the role of geography (physical and economic) in determining city outcomes. More detailed study suggests some solutions that allow us to restore a role for geography but a number of puzzles remain.

Item Type: Article
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Additional Information: This is a pre-copy-editing, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in the Journal of Economic Geography following peer review. The definitive publisher-authenticated version [Spatial evolution of the US urban system. Journal of Economic Geography, 2004, 4(2): 131-156] is available online at: LSE has developed LSE Research Online so that users may access research output of the School. Copyright and Moral Rights for the papers on this site are retained by the individual authors and/or other copyright owners. Users may download and/or print one copy of any article(s) in LSE Research Online to facilitate their private study or for non-commercial research. You may not engage in further distribution of the material or use it for any profit-making activities or any commercial gain. You may freely distribute the URL (<>) of the LSE Research Online website.
Divisions: Centre for Economic Performance
Geography & Environment
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
Date Deposited: 17 May 2006
Last Modified: 11 Apr 2024 16:48

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