IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/spr/lsprsc/v9y2016i1d10.1007_s12076-014-0132-0.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Municipal sizes and municipal restructuring in Japan

Author

Listed:
  • Kuninori Nakagawa

    () (Kushiro Public University of Economics)

Abstract

Abstract In this article, we quantitatively analyze changes in the size distribution of municipal jurisdictions in Japan by using their rank-size distribution to capture the changes. In Japan, the central government sometimes enacts large-scale municipal mergers, aimed at creating municipalities of a certain size. Japan’s local governance policy allocates tax revenues to municipalities based on the financial shortages of each municipality, which is designed to ensure financial equality among municipalities so that the central government can evenly maintain public services, especially in rural areas. Thus, if the central government eases population discrepancy among municipalities and creates a large number of uniformly sized municipalities, then the central government can reduce subsidies to local governments. The government’s previous policies on municipal mergers were enacted to foster this sort of efficiency. We examine changes in the distribution of municipal jurisdiction sizes to determine the actual effect of municipal merger policies. We obtain the result that the great municipal mergers of the 1950s Showa era made the municipalities more equal in size, which shows that the Municipality Merger Promotion Law of 1953 had an impact on the change of the size distribution of municipalities.

Suggested Citation

  • Kuninori Nakagawa, 2016. "Municipal sizes and municipal restructuring in Japan," Letters in Spatial and Resource Sciences, Springer, vol. 9(1), pages 27-41, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:lsprsc:v:9:y:2016:i:1:d:10.1007_s12076-014-0132-0
    DOI: 10.1007/s12076-014-0132-0
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://link.springer.com/10.1007/s12076-014-0132-0
    File Function: Abstract
    Download Restriction: Access to the full text of the articles in this series is restricted.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Eaton, Jonathan & Eckstein, Zvi, 1997. "Cities and growth: Theory and evidence from France and Japan," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(4-5), pages 443-474, August.
    2. Eric Weese, 2015. "Political mergers as coalition formation: An analysis of the Heisei municipal amalgamations," Quantitative Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 6(2), pages 257-307, July.
    3. Esteban Rossi-Hansberg & Mark L. J. Wright, 2007. "Urban Structure and Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 74(2), pages 597-624.
    4. Jan Eeckhout, 2004. "Gibrat's Law for (All) Cities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(5), pages 1429-1451, December.
    5. Kwok Tong Soo, 2012. "The size and growth of state populations in the United States," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 32(2), pages 1238-1249.
    6. Eric Weese, 2011. "Political Mergers as Coalition Formation," Working Papers 997, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
    7. Xavier Gabaix & Rustam Ibragimov, 2011. "Rank - 1 / 2: A Simple Way to Improve the OLS Estimation of Tail Exponents," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 29(1), pages 24-39, January.
    8. Duranton, Gilles, 2006. "Some foundations for Zipf's law: Product proliferation and local spillovers," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 542-563, July.
    9. Rosen, Kenneth T. & Resnick, Mitchel, 1980. "The size distribution of cities: An examination of the Pareto law and primacy," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 165-186, September.
    10. Parr, John B., 1985. "A note on the size distribution of cities over time," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 199-212, September.
    11. Soo, Kwok Tong, 2005. "Zipf's Law for cities: a cross-country investigation," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 239-263, May.
    12. Yoshihiko Nishiyama & Susumu Osada & Yasuhiro Sato, 2008. "OLS ESTIMATION AND THE "t" TEST REVISITED IN RANK-SIZE RULE REGRESSION," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(4), pages 691-716.
    13. Wen‐Tai Hsu, 2012. "Central Place Theory and City Size Distribution," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 122(563), pages 903-932, September.
    14. Gabaix, Xavier & Ibragimov, Rustam, 2011. "Rank − 1 / 2: A Simple Way to Improve the OLS Estimation of Tail Exponents," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 29(1), pages 24-39.
    15. Xavier Gabaix, 1999. "Zipf's Law for Cities: An Explanation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 739-767.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    The size distribution of municipal jurisdictions in Japan; The great municipal mergers of the 1950s Showa era; The rank-size rule; Gibrat’s law;

    JEL classification:

    • H11 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - Structure and Scope of Government
    • O18 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure
    • O53 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Asia including Middle East
    • 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)
    • R58 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Regional Government Analysis - - - Regional Development Planning and Policy

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:spr:lsprsc:v:9:y:2016:i:1:d:10.1007_s12076-014-0132-0. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sonal Shukla) or (Rebekah McClure). General contact details of provider: http://www.springer.com/ .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.