IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/zbw/dicedp/120.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

City age and city size

Author

Listed:
  • Giesen, Kristian
  • Suedekum, Jens

Abstract

There has been vast interest in the distribution of city sizes in an economy, but this research has largely neglected that cities also differ along another fundamental dimension: age. Using novel data on the foundation dates of more than 10,000 American cities, we find that older cities in the US tend to be larger than younger ones. To take this nexus between city age and city size into account, we introduce endogenous city creation into a dynamic economic model of an urban system. The city size distribution that emerges in our economy delivers a close fit to different types of US city size data. This evidence can resolve several recent debates, and build a bridge between different views in the literature on city size distributions.

Suggested Citation

  • Giesen, Kristian & Suedekum, Jens, 2013. "City age and city size," DICE Discussion Papers 120, University of Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:dicedp:120
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/88093/1/77220554X.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. 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.
    2. Henderson, J V, 1974. "The Sizes and Types of Cities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 64(4), pages 640-656, September.
    3. Jan Eeckhout, 2004. "Gibrat's Law for (All) Cities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(5), pages 1429-1451, December.
    4. Ramos, Arturo & Sanz-Gracia, Fernando & González-Val, Rafael, 2013. "A new framework for the US city size distribution: Empirical evidence and theory," MPRA Paper 52190, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Hernán D. Rozenfeld & Diego Rybski & Xavier Gabaix & Hernán 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 2205-2225, August.
    6. Reed, William J., 2001. "The Pareto, Zipf and other power laws," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 15-19, December.
    7. Hoyt Bleakley & Jeffrey Lin, 2012. "Portage and Path Dependence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 127(2), pages 587-644.
    8. E. D. Gould, 2007. "Cities, Workers, and Wages: A Structural Analysis of the Urban Wage Premium," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 74(2), pages 477-506.
    9. 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.
    10. Cuberes David, 2009. "A Model of Sequential City Growth," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 9(1), pages 1-41, May.
    11. Wen‐Tai Hsu, 2012. "Central Place Theory and City Size Distribution," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 122(563), pages 903-932, September.
    12. Cuberes, David, 2011. "Sequential city growth: Empirical evidence," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(2), pages 229-239, March.
    13. Duncan Black & Vernon Henderson, 2003. "Urban evolution in the USA," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 3(4), pages 343-372, October.
    14. Reed, William J., 2003. "The Pareto law of incomes—an explanation and an extension," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 319(C), pages 469-486.
    15. 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.
    16. 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.
    17. Sánchez-Vidal, María & González-Val, Rafael & Viladecans-Marsal, Elisabet, 2014. "Sequential city growth in the US: Does age matter?," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 29-37.
    18. Moshe Levy, 2009. "Gibrat's Law for (All) Cities: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(4), pages 1672-1675, September.
    19. Xavier Gabaix, 1999. "Zipf's Law for Cities: An Explanation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(3), pages 739-767.
    20. William J. Reed, 2002. "On the Rank‐Size Distribution for Human Settlements," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(1), pages 1-17, February.
    21. Glaeser, Edward L & Mare, David C, 2001. "Cities and Skills," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(2), pages 316-342, April.
    22. Rafael González-Val & Arturo Ramos & Fernando Sanz-Gracia & María Vera-Cabello, 2015. "Size distributions for all cities: Which one is best?," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 94(1), pages 177-196, March.
    23. Sánchez-Vidal, María & González-Val, Rafael & Viladecans-Marsal, Elisabet, 2014. "Sequential city growth in the US: Does age matter?," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 29-37.
    24. Nitsch, Volker, 2005. "Zipf zipped," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 86-100, January.
    25. Harris Dobkins, Linda & Ioannides, Yannis M., 2001. "Spatial interactions among U.S. cities: 1900-1990," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 701-731, November.
    26. Garmestani, Ahjond S. & Allen, Craig R. & Gallagher, Colin M., 2008. "Power laws, discontinuities and regional city size distributions," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 209-216, October.
    27. Jan Eeckhout, 2009. "Gibrat's Law for (All) Cities: Reply," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(4), pages 1676-1683, September.
    28. Guy Michaels & Ferdinand Rauch & Stephen J. Redding, 2012. "Urbanization and Structural Transformation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 127(2), pages 535-586.
    29. Wen-Tai Hsu & Tomoya Mori & Tony E. Smith, 2014. "Spatial Patterns and Size Distributions of Cities," KIER Working Papers 882, Kyoto University, Institute of Economic Research.
    30. 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.
    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. Ramos, Arturo, 2015. "Are the log-growth rates of city sizes normally distributed? Empirical evidence for the US," MPRA Paper 65584, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Rafael González‐Val, 2019. "Historical urban growth in Europe (1300–1800)," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 98(2), pages 1115-1136, April.
    3. Miguel Puente-Ajovín & Arturo Ramos, 2015. "On the parametric description of the French, German, Italian and Spanish city size distributions," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer;Western Regional Science Association, vol. 54(2), pages 489-509, March.
    4. Brendan K. Beare & Alexis Akira Toda, 2017. "Geometrically stopped Markovian random growth processes and Pareto tails," Papers 1712.01431, arXiv.org, revised Dec 2019.
    5. Schmidheiny, Kurt & Suedekum, Jens, 2015. "The pan-European population distribution across consistently defined functional urban areas," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 133(C), pages 10-13.
    6. Massing, Till & Puente-Ajovín, Miguel & Ramos, Arturo, 2020. "On the parametric description of log-growth rates of cities’ sizes of four European countries and the USA," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 551(C).
    7. Ramos, Arturo & Sanz-Gracia, Fernando, 2015. "US city size distribution revisited: Theory and empirical evidence," MPRA Paper 64051, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Alexander S. Skorobogatov, 2016. "Spatial Equilibrium Approach to the Analysis of Income Differentials Across Russian Cities," HSE Working papers WP BRP 149/EC/2016, National Research University Higher School of Economics.
    9. Sánchez-Vidal, María & González-Val, Rafael & Viladecans-Marsal, Elisabet, 2014. "Sequential city growth in the US: Does age matter?," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 29-37.
    10. González-Val, Rafael, 2020. "The Spanish spatial city size distribution," MPRA Paper 101195, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Beare, Brendan K & Toda, Alexis Akira, 2020. "On the emergence of a power law in the distribution of COVID-19 cases," University of California at San Diego, Economics Working Paper Series qt9k5027d0, Department of Economics, UC San Diego.
    12. Skorobogatov, Alexander S., 2018. "Why do newer cities promise higher wages in Russia?," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 104(C), pages 16-34.
    13. Desmet, Klaus & Rappaport, Jordan, 2017. "The settlement of the United States, 1800–2000: The long transition towards Gibrat’s law," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 98(C), pages 50-68.
    14. Sebastian Scheuer & Dagmar Haase & Martin Volk, 2016. "On the Nexus of the Spatial Dynamics of Global Urbanization and the Age of the City," PLOS ONE, Public Library of Science, vol. 11(8), pages 1-20, August.
    15. Arturo Ramos, 2017. "Are the log-growth rates of city sizes distributed normally? Empirical evidence for the USA," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 53(3), pages 1109-1123, November.
    16. Ignacio Rosal, 2018. "Power laws in EU country exports," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 45(2), pages 311-337, May.
    17. Ramos, Arturo & Sanz-Gracia, Fernando & González-Val, Rafael, 2013. "A new framework for the US city size distribution: Empirical evidence and theory," MPRA Paper 52190, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    18. Ramos, Arturo, 2015. "Log-growth distributions of US city sizes and non-Lévy processes," MPRA Paper 66561, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    19. Devadoss, Stephen & Luckstead, Jeff, 2015. "Growth process of U.S. small cities," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 135(C), pages 12-14.
    20. Antonio Accetturo & Michele Cascarano & Guido de Blasio, 2019. "Dynamics of urban growth: Italy, 1951–2011," Economia Politica: Journal of Analytical and Institutional Economics, Springer;Fondazione Edison, vol. 36(2), pages 373-398, July.
    21. Arturo, Ramos, 2019. "Have the log-population processes stationary and independent increments? Empirical evidence for Italy, Spain and the USA along more than a century," MPRA Paper 93562, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Kristian Giesen & Jens Suedekum, 2012. "The Size Distribution across all "Cities": A Unifying Approach," CESifo Working Paper Series 3730, CESifo.
    2. Kristian Giesen & Jens Suedekum, 2012. "The Size Distribution across all "Cities": A Unifying Approach," CESifo Working Paper Series 3730, CESifo.
    3. Rafael González-Val, 2019. "US city-size distribution and space," Spatial Economic Analysis, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 14(3), pages 283-300, July.
    4. Ramos, Arturo & Sanz-Gracia, Fernando, 2015. "US city size distribution revisited: Theory and empirical evidence," MPRA Paper 64051, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Duranton, Gilles & Puga, Diego, 2014. "The Growth of Cities," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 5, pages 781-853, Elsevier.
    6. Rafael Gonz�lez-Val & Luis Lanaspa, 2016. "Patterns in US Urban Growth, 1790-2000," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 50(2), pages 289-309, February.
    7. Rafael González‐Val, 2019. "Historical urban growth in Europe (1300–1800)," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 98(2), pages 1115-1136, April.
    8. Ramos, Arturo & Sanz-Gracia, Fernando & González-Val, Rafael, 2013. "A new framework for the US city size distribution: Empirical evidence and theory," MPRA Paper 52190, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Kristian Giesen & Jens Suedekum, 2012. "The Size Distribution across all "Cities": A Unifying Approach," CESifo Working Paper Series 3730, CESifo Group Munich.
    10. Sánchez-Vidal, María & González-Val, Rafael & Viladecans-Marsal, Elisabet, 2014. "Sequential city growth in the US: Does age matter?," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 29-37.
    11. González-Val, Rafael, 2018. "The spatial distribution of US cities," MPRA Paper 89586, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    12. Arturo, Ramos, 2019. "Have the log-population processes stationary and independent increments? Empirical evidence for Italy, Spain and the USA along more than a century," MPRA Paper 93562, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    13. Sánchez-Vidal, María & González-Val, Rafael & Viladecans-Marsal, Elisabet, 2014. "Sequential city growth in the US: Does age matter?," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 29-37.
    14. Miguel Puente-Ajovín & Arturo Ramos, 2015. "On the parametric description of the French, German, Italian and Spanish city size distributions," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer;Western Regional Science Association, vol. 54(2), pages 489-509, March.
    15. Valente J. Matlaba & Mark J. Holmes & Philip McCann & Jacques Poot, 2013. "A Century Of The Evolution Of The Urban System In Brazil," Review of Urban & Regional Development Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(3), pages 129-151, November.
    16. Su, Hsuan-Li, 2020. "On the city size distribution: A finite mixture interpretation," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 116(C).
    17. Lee, Sanghoon & Li, Qiang, 2013. "Uneven landscapes and city size distributions," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 19-29.
    18. Arshad, Sidra & Hu, Shougeng & Ashraf, Badar Nadeem, 2019. "Zipf’s law, the coherence of the urban system and city size distribution: Evidence from Pakistan," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 513(C), pages 87-103.
    19. Arturo Ramos, 2017. "Are the log-growth rates of city sizes distributed normally? Empirical evidence for the USA," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 53(3), pages 1109-1123, November.
    20. Ramos, Arturo, 2015. "Log-growth distributions of US city sizes and non-Lévy processes," MPRA Paper 66561, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Zipf's law; Gibrat's law; city size distributions; city age; DPLN distribution;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • 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)

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    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:zbw:dicedp:120. 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: (ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/diduede.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.