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Urban Population Development in Europe, 1991–2008: The Examples of Poland and the UK

Authors

  • NADJA KABISCH,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Computational Landscape Ecology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research — UFZ, Permoserstraße 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany and Humboldt University Berlin, Germany
      Nadja Kabisch (nadja.kabisch@ufz.de) and Dagmar Haase (dagmar.haase@ufz.de) Department of Computational Landscape Ecology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research — UFZ, Permoserstraße 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany and Humboldt University Berlin, Unter den Linden 6, 10099 Berlin, Germany, and Annegret Haase (annegret.haase@ufz.de), Department of Urban Sociology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research — UFZ, Permoserstraße 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany.
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  • DAGMAR HAASE,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Computational Landscape Ecology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research — UFZ, Permoserstraße 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany and Humboldt University Berlin, Germany
      Nadja Kabisch (nadja.kabisch@ufz.de) and Dagmar Haase (dagmar.haase@ufz.de) Department of Computational Landscape Ecology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research — UFZ, Permoserstraße 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany and Humboldt University Berlin, Unter den Linden 6, 10099 Berlin, Germany, and Annegret Haase (annegret.haase@ufz.de), Department of Urban Sociology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research — UFZ, Permoserstraße 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany.
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  • ANNEGRET HAASE

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Urban Sociology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research — UFZ, Germany
      Nadja Kabisch (nadja.kabisch@ufz.de) and Dagmar Haase (dagmar.haase@ufz.de) Department of Computational Landscape Ecology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research — UFZ, Permoserstraße 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany and Humboldt University Berlin, Unter den Linden 6, 10099 Berlin, Germany, and Annegret Haase (annegret.haase@ufz.de), Department of Urban Sociology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research — UFZ, Permoserstraße 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany.
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  • We would like to thank Henning Nuissl, Matthew Cocks and three IJURR reviewers for their insightful comments on earlier drafts of this article. This work was financially supported by the EU Integrated Project PLUREL (contract number 036921). It was also kindly supported by the Helmholtz Impulse and Networking Fund through the Helmholtz Interdisciplinary Graduate School for Environmental Research (HIGRADE). The usual disclaimers apply.

Nadja Kabisch (nadja.kabisch@ufz.de) and Dagmar Haase (dagmar.haase@ufz.de) Department of Computational Landscape Ecology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research — UFZ, Permoserstraße 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany and Humboldt University Berlin, Unter den Linden 6, 10099 Berlin, Germany, and Annegret Haase (annegret.haase@ufz.de), Department of Urban Sociology, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research — UFZ, Permoserstraße 15, 04318 Leipzig, Germany.

Abstract

Abstract

Across Europe, there is a complex mosaic of urban population development. Characterized by great diversity and heterogeneity, this development does not follow a common pattern and cannot be attributed to specific regional trends (e.g. Eastern or Western European geographic location, or post-socialist, old industrial or developed capitalist economic models). In this article, we show how this mosaic can be explained, relating it to various driving forces and overarching processes. Using a multilevel approach and looking at the period 1991–2008, we identified various European city population growth or decline clusters; these indicated that urban population development does not necessarily follow strictly national lines. Further, we argue that similar clusters of growing and declining cities may occur within European countries as diverse as Poland and the UK. Overarching driving forces such as demographic change interfere with national specificity and the peculiarities of local settings. The most significant finding of this article is that overlapping driving forces currently lead in their interplay to diverging courses of urban population development on different spatial scales (and will probably continue to do so in future).

Résumé

L'évolution de la population urbaine en Europe se présente comme une mosaïque complexe. Caractérisée par une diversité et une hétérogénéitéélevées, elle n'obéit à aucun schéma commun et ne peut être attribuée à aucune tendance régionale précise (comme la situation géographique en Europe de l'Est ou de l'Ouest, ou bien les modèles économiques post-socialistes, industriels anciens ou capitalistes développés). Il est possible d'expliquer cette mosaïque en la reliant à divers facteurs moteurs et processus dominants. Une approche à plusieurs niveaux et l'étude de la période 1991–2008 permettent d'identifier différents pôles de croissance et de déclin de la population dans les villes européennes. Ceux-ci indiquent que la population urbaine ne suit pas forcément les tendances nationales. En outre, des pôles similaires de villes en croissance et en déclin peuvent exister dans des pays aussi distincts que la Pologne et le Royaume-Uni. Les dynamiques dominantes, telles que les changements démographiques, interfèrent avec la spécificité nationale et les particularités des contextes locaux. La conclusion la plus importante de ce travail est que ces dynamiques superposées viennent se conjuguer pour créer, selon l'échelon spatial, des trajectoires distinctes d'évolution de la population urbaine (ce qu'elles continueront sans doute de faire à l'avenir).

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