The Development of Cities in Italy 1300 - 1861

43 Pages Posted: 29 Jan 2007

See all articles by Erik Maarten Bosker

Erik Maarten Bosker

University of Groningen; Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) - Department of Economics

Steven Brakman

University of Groningen - Department of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Harry Garretsen

Utrecht University - School of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute); Radboud University Nijmegen - Department of Economics

Herman de Jong

University of Groningen - Faculty of Economics and Business

Marc Schramm

Utrecht University - Faculty of Law

Date Written: January 2007

Abstract

The evolution of city growth is usually studied for relatively short time periods. The rise and decline of cities is, however, typically a process that takes many decades or even centuries. In this paper we study the evolution of Italian cities over the period 1300-1861. The first contribution of our paper is that we use various descriptive statistics on individual city sizes and the city-size distribution as a whole to highlight the main characteristics of Italy's urban system such as the differences between northern and southern Italy. Our second, and main, contribution is that our data allow for panel estimation where city-size is regressed on various geographical, political and other determinants of city size for the period 1300-1861. We show that, although large shocks such as the plague epidemics are clearly visible in the data, the main determinants of Italy's city growth invariably are physical geography and political predominance. Also the North-South difference turns out to be important.

JEL Classification: R12, O18

Suggested Citation

Bosker, Erik Maarten and Brakman, Steven and Garretsen, Harry and de Jong, Herman and Schramm, Marc, The Development of Cities in Italy 1300 - 1861 (January 2007). CESifo Working Paper Series No. 1893. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=960008

Erik Maarten Bosker (Contact Author)

University of Groningen ( email )

P.O. Box 800
9700 AH Groningen, Groningen 9700 AV
Netherlands

Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) - Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 1738
3000 DR Rotterdam
Netherlands

Steven Brakman

University of Groningen - Department of Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 800
9700 AV Groningen
Netherlands
+31 50 363 3746 (Phone)
+31 50 363 3730 (Fax)

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

Harry Garretsen

Utrecht University - School of Economics ( email )

Kriekenpitplein 21-22
Adam Smith Building
Utrecht, 3584 EC
Netherlands
+31 0 30 253 9810 (Phone)

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.cesifo.de

Radboud University Nijmegen - Department of Economics ( email )

Nijmegen, 6500 HK
Netherlands
+31 24 361 5889 (Phone)
+31 24 361 1846 (Fax)

Herman De Jong

University of Groningen - Faculty of Economics and Business ( email )

Postbus 72
9700 AB Groningen
Netherlands

Marc Schramm

Utrecht University - Faculty of Law ( email )

Janskerkhof 3
Utrecht, 3512 BK
Netherlands

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