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Faculty of Economics

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Beltràn Tapia, F., Díez-Minguela, A., Martínez-Galarraga, J.

The Shadow of Cities: Size, Location and the Spatial Distribution of Population in Spain


Abstract: Using a large data set on the population of Spanish municipalities between 1877 and 2001, this paper analyses how their initial size and the presence of neighbouring urban locations influence subsequent population growth and how these links have evolved over time. Our results show that initial size is negatively related to population growth, except in the 1960s and 1970s when this relationship becomes positive. Likewise, the presence of neighbouring urban locations limited local population growth in the late 19th century, a negative effect that persisted, but at a diminishing rate, until the second half of the 20th century. The influence of nearby cities became increasingly positive from then onwards, and especially so during the 1970s.

Keywords: Agglomeration economies, spatial interactions, regional growth, Spain

JEL Codes: N93 N94 O18 R11 R12

Author links: Francisco Beltran  


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