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The Swedish countryside in the neo-urban knowledge economy
KTH, School of Architecture and the Built Environment (ABE), Sustainable development, Environmental science and Engineering, Environmental Strategies Research (fms).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2080-6859
2013 (English)In: Regional Science Policy and Practice, ISSN 1757-7802, Vol. 5, no 2, 225-236 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

As in other countries, urbanization and industrialization in Sweden was two sides of the same coin. To a large extent, the Swedish urbanization took place at a low level with the emergence of many small towns. In the last decades, a redistribution of the urban population to bigger cities has happened. This neo-urbanization is interpreted as a consequence of the breakthrough of the knowledge economy. This paper focuses on the ‘backside of the coin’ of this neo-urbanization, namely, how the rural areas have been affected. Westlund found that the countryside's population growth 1990–1997 primarily could be explained by income and the size of the local labour market. In this paper, we examine the current trends of population development in different age groups and extend the possible explanatory variables to among others, some variables measuring local social capital. Our main result is that it does not seem to be rural amenities per se that explain rural population growth in certain areas, but the rural areas' relative accessibility to urban amenities. This rural dependency on urban services and goods is a major challenge for rural policy in the neo-urban knowledge economy.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 5, no 2, 225-236 p.
National Category
Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-137940DOI: 10.1111/rsp3.12006OAI: diva2:679794

QC 20140128

Available from: 2013-12-16 Created: 2013-12-16 Last updated: 2014-01-29Bibliographically approved

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