IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/oxf/wpaper/536.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Towns (and Villages); Definitions and Implications in a Historical Setting

Author

Listed:
  • Florian Ploeckl

Abstract

Urbanization has been extensively used as a proxy for economic activity. The urban status of settlements is usually determined by an ad hoc population size household. This paper proposes a new threshold, taking into account the effect of local agricultural endowments. The new population threshold is a population size, such that for smaller settlements these endowments influence their size, while for larger they do not. This results in an endogeneous, data based threshold. The idea is practically shown for Saxony in the 19th century. The relevance of a different classification is demonstrated in four particular examples, the development of urbanization over time, Gibrat's law, the impact of geography on town locations and the spatial relationship between towns and villages. The resulst demonstrate that the underlying classification scheme matters for the conclusions drawn from urban data.

Suggested Citation

  • Florian Ploeckl, 2011. "Towns (and Villages); Definitions and Implications in a Historical Setting," Economics Series Working Papers 536, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:oxf:wpaper:536
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.economics.ox.ac.uk/materials/working_papers/paper536.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James Robinson, 2005. "The Rise of Europe: Atlantic Trade, Institutional Change, and Economic Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 546-579.
    2. Ploeckl, Florian, 2012. "Endowments and market access; the size of towns in historical perspective: Saxony, 1550–1834," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(4), pages 607-618.
    3. Nathan Nunn & Nancy Qian, 2011. "The Potato's Contribution to Population and Urbanization: Evidence From A Historical Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(2), pages 593-650.
    4. Davide Cantoni & Noam Yuchtman, 2014. "Medieval Universities, Legal Institutions, and the Commercial Revolution," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, pages 823-887.
    5. Jan Eeckhout, 2004. "Gibrat's Law for (All) Cities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 1429-1451.
    6. Florian Ploeckl, 2010. "The Zollverein and the Formation of a Customs Union," Economics Series Working Papers Number 84, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    7. Jeremiah E. Dittmar, 2011. "Information Technology and Economic Change: The Impact of The Printing Press," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(3), pages 1133-1172.
    8. Florian Ploeckl, 2008. "Borders, Market Size and Urban Growth, The Case of Saxon Towns and the Zollverein in the 19th Century," Working Papers 966, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
    9. E J Malecki, 1980. "Growth and Change in the Analysis of Rank—Size Distributions: Empirical Findings," Environment and Planning A, , vol. 12(1), pages 41-52, January.
    10. Jan Eeckhout, 2009. "Gibrat's Law for (All) Cities: Reply," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 1676-1683.
    11. 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.
    12. G Duranton, 1999. "Distance, land, and proximity: economic analysis and the evolution of cities," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 31(12), pages 2169-2188, December.
    13. Alberto F. Ades & Edward L. Glaeser, 1995. "Trade and Circuses: Explaining Urban Giants," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(1), pages 195-227.
    14. Paul R. Bergin & Robert C. Feenstra & Gordon H. Hanson, 2017. "Offshoring and Volatility: Evidence from Mexico’s Maquiladora Industry," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: International Macroeconomic Interdependence, chapter 2, pages 31-44 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    15. Florian Ploeckl, 2015. "The Zollverein and the Sequence of a Customs Union," School of Economics Working Papers 2015-02, University of Adelaide, School of Economics.
    16. Xavier Gabaix, 1999. "Zipf's Law and the Growth of Cities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 129-132.
    17. Florian Ploeckl, 2012. "Space, settlements, towns: the influence of geography and market access on settlement distribution and urbanization," Working Papers 2012/23, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
    18. France Guerin-Pace, 1995. "Rank-Size Distribution and the Process of Urban Growth," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 32(3), pages 551-562, April.
    19. E J Malecki, 1980. "Growth and change in the analysis of rank - size distributions: empirical findings," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 12(1), pages 41-52, January.
    20. J. V. Henderson & J. F. Thisse (ed.), 2004. "Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 4, number 4.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Erik Hornung, 2015. "Railroads And Growth In Prussia," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 13(4), pages 699-736, August.
    2. Erik Hornung, 2012. "Human Capital, Technology Diffusion, and Economic Growth - Evidence from Prussian Census Data," ifo Beiträge zur Wirtschaftsforschung, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, number 46, April.
    3. Florian Ploeckl, 2012. "Space, settlements, towns: the influence of geography and market access on settlement distribution and urbanization," Working Papers 2012/23, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
    4. Ploeckl, Florian, 2012. "Endowments and market access; the size of towns in historical perspective: Saxony, 1550–1834," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(4), pages 607-618.
    5. Hornung, Erik, 2012. "Railroads and Micro-regional Growth in Prussia," CAGE Online Working Paper Series 80, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Towns; Villages; Geography; Definition; Classification; Town size;

    JEL classification:

    • N93 - Economic History - - Regional and Urban History - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • B49 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology - - - Other
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Lists

    This item is featured on the following reading lists or Wikipedia pages:
    1. Historical Economic Geography

    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:oxf:wpaper:536. 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: (Anne Pouliquen). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/sfeixuk.html .

    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.