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On the Emergence of Cities

Page, Scott E. (1999) On the Emergence of Cities. Journal of Urban Economics, 45 (1). pp. 184-208. ISSN 0094-1190. doi:10.1006/juec.1998.2091.

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This paper contains a description of a general class of city formation models. Individual economic agents have preferences for locations that depend upon the population distribution. A location's attractiveness depends upon some combination of its population and its average distance to other agents. Economic variables enter indirectly. Taking this broad perspective leads to a deeper understanding of how cities form as well as of the sensitivity to initial conditions of their locations and sizes. In addition, this class of models supports scenarios where cities emerge: without any assumptions that agents wish to live near or with one another, agents cluster into cities.

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Additional Information:© 1999 Academic Press. Received 12 September 1997, Revised 20 July 1998. I thank Jenna Bednar, Paul Krugman, and James Pierce as well as seminar participants at Caltech for comments on earlier versions of this paper. I also thank the MacArthur Foundation for financial support.
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John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur FoundationUNSPECIFIED
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Official Citation:Scott E Page, On the Emergence of Cities, Journal of Urban Economics, Volume 45, Issue 1, January 1999, Pages 184-208, ISSN 0094-1190, (
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:80903
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:30 Aug 2017 17:53
Last Modified:15 Nov 2021 19:39

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