The Size Distribution across all "Cities": A Unifying Approach
AbstractIn this paper we show that the double Pareto lognormal (DPLN) parameterization provides an excellent fit to the overall US city size distribution, regardless of whether “cities” are administratively defined Census places or economically defined area clusters. We then consider an economic model that combines scale-independent urban growth (Gibrat’s law) with endogenous city creation. City sizes converge to a DPLN distribution in this model, which is much better in line with the data than previous urban growth frameworks that predict a lognormal or a Pareto city size distribution (Zipf’s law).
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 3730.
Date of creation: 2012
Date of revision:
Zipf’s law; Gibrat’s law; city size distributions; double Pareto-Lognormal;
Other versions of this item:
- Kristian Giesen & Jens Suedekum, 2012. "The Size Distribution Across All "Cities": A Unifying Approach," SERC Discussion Papers 0122, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.
- Giesen, Kristian & Suedekum, Jens, 2012. "The Size Distribution Across All "Cities": A Unifying Approach," IZA Discussion Papers 6352, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Kristian Giesen & Jens Suedekum, 2012. "The size distribution across all 'cities': A unifying approach," ERSA conference papers ersa12p106, European Regional Science Association.
- Kristian Giesen & Jens Suedekum, 2012. "The size distribution across all “cities”: a unifying approach," Working Papers 2012/2, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
- R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes
- R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)
- O40 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Henderson, J. Vernon & Wang, Hyoung Gun, 2007. "Urbanization and city growth: The role of institutions," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 283-313, May.
- Esteban Rossi-Hansberg & Mark L.J. Wright, 2005.
"Urban Structure and Growth,"
NBER Working Papers
11262, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Mark Wright & Esteban Rossi-Hansberg, 2004. "Urban Structure and Growth," 2004 Meeting Papers 33, Society for Economic Dynamics.
- Esteban Rossi-Hansberg & Mark L. J. Wright, 2006. "Urban structure and growth," Staff Report 381, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
- Esteban Rossi-Hansberg & Mark L. J. Wright, 2003. "Urban structure and growth," Discussion Paper / Institute for Empirical Macroeconomics 141, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
- Hernán D. Rozenfeld & Diego Rybski & Xavier Gabaix & Hernán A. Makse, 2009.
"The Area and Population of Cities: New Insights from a Different Perspective on Cities,"
NBER Working Papers
15409, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Hern�n D. Rozenfeld & Diego Rybski & Xavier Gabaix & Hern�n A. Makse, 2011. "The Area and Population of Cities: New Insights from a Different Perspective on Cities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(5), pages 2205-25, August.
- Nitsch, Volker, 2004.
2004/16, Free University Berlin, School of Business & Economics.
- Vernon Henderson & Anthony Venables, 2009. "Dynamics of city formation," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 12(2), pages 233-254, April.
- María Sánchez-Vidal & Rafael González-Val & Elisabet Viladecans-Marsal, 2013. "Sequential city growth in the US: does age matter?," Working Papers 2013/1, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
- Henderson, J V, 1974.
"The Sizes and Types of Cities,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 64(4), pages 640-56, September.
- Ioannides, Yannis & Skouras, Spyros, 2013. "US city size distribution: Robustly Pareto, but only in the tail," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 18-29.
- Jan Eeckhout, 2004. "Gibrat's Law for (All) Cities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(5), pages 1429-1451, December.
- Linda Harris Dobkins & Yannis M. Ioannides, 1999.
"Spatial Interactions Among U.S. Cities: 1900-1990,"
Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University
9913, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
- David Cuberes, 2010.
"Sequential city growth: empirical evidence,"
Working Papers. Serie AD
2010-05, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
- Cuberes David, 2009.
"A Model of Sequential City Growth,"
The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics,
De Gruyter, vol. 9(1), pages 1-41, May.
- Yannis M. Ioannides & Spyros Skouras, 2009. "Gibrat's Law for (All) Cities: A Rejoinder," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 0740, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
- William J. Reed, 2002. "On the Rank-Size Distribution for Human Settlements," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(1), pages 1-17.
- Wen‐Tai Hsu, 2012. "Central Place Theory and City Size Distribution," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 122(563), pages 903-932, 09.
- Xavier Gabaix, 1999. "Zipf'S Law For Cities: An Explanation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 114(3), pages 739-767, August.
- Giesen, Kristian & Zimmermann, Arndt & Suedekum, Jens, 2010. "The size distribution across all cities - Double Pareto lognormal strikes," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 129-137, September.
- González-Val, Rafael & Ramos, Arturo & Sanz, Fernando & Vera-Cabello, María, 2013. "Size Distributions for All Cities: Which One is Best?," MPRA Paper 44314, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Kristian GIESEN & Jens SÜDEKUM, 2012. "The French Overall City Size Distribution," Region et Developpement, Region et Developpement, LEAD, Universite du Sud - Toulon Var, vol. 36, pages 107-126.
- Ferdinand Rauch, 2013. "Cities as Spatial Clusters," Economics Series Working Papers 656, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Julio Saavedra).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.