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Reexamining Rural Decline: How Changing Rural Classifications Affect Perceived Growth

  • Artz, Georgeanne M.
  • Orazem, Peter

This article illustrates the commonly overlooked sample selection problem inherent in using rural classification methods that change over time due to population changes. Since fast growing rural areas grow out of their rural status, using recent rural definitions excludes the most successful places from the analysis. Average economic performance of the areas remaining rural significantly understates true rural performance. We illustrate this problem using one rural classification system, rural-urban continuum codes. Choice of code vintage alters conclusions regarding the relative speed of rural and urban growth and can mislead researchers regarding magnitudes and signs of factors believed to influence growth.

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File URL: http://www.econ.iastate.edu/sites/default/files/publications/papers/paper_12224_05001.pdf
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Paper provided by Iowa State University, Department of Economics in its series Staff General Research Papers with number 12224.

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Date of creation: 05 Jan 2005
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Review of Regional Studies, Fall 2006, vol. 36, pp. 163-191
Handle: RePEc:isu:genres:12224
Contact details of provider: Postal: Iowa State University, Dept. of Economics, 260 Heady Hall, Ames, IA 50011-1070
Phone: +1 515.294.6741
Fax: +1 515.294.0221
Web page: http://www.econ.iastate.edu
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  1. Robert J. Barro & Paul Romer, 1993. "Economic Growth," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number barr93-1, October.
    • Robert J. Barro & Paul M. Romer, 1991. "Economic Growth," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number barr91-1, October.
  2. Baumol, William J, 1986. "Productivity Growth, Convergence, and Welfare: What the Long-run Data Show," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(5), pages 1072-85, December.
  3. Glenn Fuguitt & Tim Heaton & Daniel Lichter, 1988. "Monitoring the metropolitanization process," Demography, Springer, vol. 25(1), pages 115-128, February.
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