Political Economy of City Sizes and Formation
J. Vernon Henderson
London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
Randy A. Becker
U.S. Census Bureau - Center for Economic Studies
Journal of Urban Economics, Vol. 48, No. 3, November 2000
There are two paradigms of city formation and size-the competitive model of large-scale land developers operating in national land markets and the self-organization model of agglomeration. This paper examines the effects of local politics, urban classes, and restrictions in national land markets on city size and formation. It starts by introducing local politics into the two paradigms. Then it turns to a growth situation, where land developers initiate new settlements, but existing cities are either self-organized or governed locally. The paper also examines the politics of local no-growth movements and of governance of specially favored mega-cities.
Date posted: May 18, 2001