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Small Cities Blues: Looking for Growth Factors in Small and Medium-Sized Cities

Author

Listed:
  • George A. Erickcek

    () (W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research)

  • Hannah McKinney

    (Kalamazoo College)

Abstract

The purpose of this exploratory study is to attempt to identify particular public policies which have the potential to increase the economic viability of smaller metropolitan areas and cities. We identify characteristics associated with smaller metro areas that performed better-than-expected (winners) and worse-than-expected (losers) during the 1990s, given their resources, industrial mix, and location as of 1990. Once these characteristics have been identified, we look for evidence that public policy choices may have promoted and enhanced a metro area's ability to succeed and to regain control of its own economic destiny. Methodologically, we construct a regression model which identifies the small metro areas that achieved higher-than-expected economic prosperity (winners) and the areas that saw lower-than-expected economic prosperity (losers) according to the model. Next, we explore whether indications exist that winners and losers are qualitatively different from other areas in ways that may indicate consequences of policy choices. A cluster analysis is completed to group the metro areas based on changes in a host of social, economic, and demographic variables between 1990 and 2000. We then use contingency table analysis and ANOVA to see if "winning" or "losing," as measured by the error term from the regression, is related to the grouping of metro areas in a way that may indicate the presence of deliberate and replicable government policy.

Suggested Citation

  • George A. Erickcek & Hannah McKinney, 2004. "Small Cities Blues: Looking for Growth Factors in Small and Medium-Sized Cities," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles 04-100, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:upj:weupjo:04-100
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Tarsha EASON & Ahjond S. GARMESTANI, 2012. "Cross-Scale Dynamics Of A Regional Urban System Through Time," Region et Developpement, Region et Developpement, LEAD, Universite du Sud - Toulon Var, vol. 36, pages 55-77.
    2. Elizabeth Mack & Tony H. Grubesic & Erin Kessler, 2007. "Indices of Industrial Diversity and Regional Economic Composition," Growth and Change, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(3), pages 474-509.
    3. Laura REESE, 2012. "CREATIVE CLASS OR PROCREATIVE CLASS: IMPLICATIONS FOR LOCAL ECONoMIC DEVELOPMENT POLICY," Theoretical and Empirical Researches in Urban Management, Research Centre in Public Administration and Public Services, Bucharest, Romania, vol. 7(1), pages 5-26, February.
    4. Yolanda Kodrzycki & Ana Patricia Muñoz, 2013. "Economic distress and resurgence in U.S. central cities: concepts, causes, and policy levers," Public Policy Discussion Paper 13-3, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
    5. Markusen, Ann, 2007. "A Consumption Base Theory of Development: An Application to the Rural Cultural Economy," Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, Northeastern Agricultural and Resource Economics Association, vol. 36(1), April.
    6. Ravi Pendakur & Nathan Young, 2013. "Putting on the moves," Demographic Research, Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, Rostock, Germany, vol. 29(28), pages 767-796, October.
    7. David Bell & Mark Jayne, 2009. "Small Cities? Towards a Research Agenda," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 33(3), pages 683-699, September.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    economic; development; growth; factors; erickcek; mckinney; incentives; local; regional; small; medium; cities;

    JEL classification:

    • R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes

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