Deviations from Zipf's Law for American Cities: An Empirical Examination
AbstractThis paper presents a simple method for calculating deviations between actual city size and the size which would correspond to it with a Pareto exponent equal to one (Zipf's law). The results show two differentiated behaviours: most cities (80.25 per cent) present a greater size than that which would fulfil Zipf's law, while small cities (19.75 per cent) tend to be too small. The aim of the paper is to analyse the distribution element by element, using data about city characteristics from all American cities in 2000, and to explain the deviation between the size predicted by Zipf's law and the actual size of each city. To do this, a multinomial logit model is used. The most important variables affecting the probability of a city presenting a negative or positive deviation are per capita income, human capital levels and the percentage of the population employed in some sectors.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Urban Studies Journal Limited in its journal Urban Studies.
Volume (Year): 48 (2011)
Issue (Month): 5 (April)
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Web page: http://www.gla.ac.uk/departments/urbanstudiesjournal
Other versions of this item:
- Rafael, González-Val, 2008. "Deviations from Zipf’s Law for American cities: an empirical examination," MPRA Paper 11504, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- C16 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Econometric and Statistical Methods; Specific Distributions
- R00 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General - - - General
- R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)
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