Shrinking Cities: A Global Perspective (Paperback) book cover

Shrinking Cities

A Global Perspective

Edited by Harry W. Richardson, Chang Woon Nam

© 2014 – Routledge

336 pages | 51 B/W Illus.

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Paperback: 9780415643962
pub: 2014-03-06
Hardback: 9780415643955
pub: 2014-03-04
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pub: 2014-03-14
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This book examines a rapidly emerging new topic in urban settlement patterns: the role of shrinking cities. Much coverage is given to declining fertility rates, ageing populations and economic restructuring as the factors behind shrinking cities, but there is also reference to resource depletion, the demise of single-company towns and the micro-location of environmental hazards.

The contributions show that shrinkage can occur at any scale – from neighbourhood to macro-region - and they consider whether shrinkage of metropolitan areas as a whole may be a future trend. Also addressed in this volume is the question of whether urban shrinkage policies are necessary or effective.

The book comprises four parts:

  • world or regional issues (with reference to the European Union and Latin America);
  • national case studies (the United States, India, China, Korea, Taiwan, Germany, Romania and Estonia);
  • city case studies (Detroit, Buffalo, Cleveland, Naples, Belfast and Halle);
  • and broad issues such as the environmental consequences of shrinking cities.

This book will be of interest to scholars and practitioners working in the fields of urban studies, economic geography and public policy.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction Harry W. Richardson and Chang Woon Nam Part I: Global and Regional Issues 2. International Shrinking Cities: Analysis, classification and prospects Wendell Cox 3.Shrinking Cities in Latin America: An oxymoron? Ivonne Audirac 4. Urban Shrinkage in the EU Gert-Jan Hospers Part II: National Issues 5. Shrinking Cities: The United States Richard Morrill 6.The Landscape of Population Decline in the United States: Considering the roles of the demographic components of change and geography Rachel Franklin 7. Are Large German Cities Really Shrinking? Demographic and economic development in recent years Florian Bartholomae and Chang Woon Nam 8. Urban Shrinkage in Romania: Scope and determinants Alina M. Schoenberg and Daniela Luminita Constantin 9. Shrinking Cities and Processes in Estonia Peter Friedrich, Aivo Ülper and Kadri Ukrainski 10. Shrinking Cities in South Korea: The future Harry W. Richardson and Chang-Hee Christine Bae 11.When Growth Grinds to a Halt: Population and economic development of resource-depleted cities in China Sylvia Ying He 12.India Sukumar Ganapati 13. Are Cities in Taiwan Shrinking? Michael Cheng-Yi Lin Part III: Case Study Cities 14. Driving Shrinking Detroit George Galster 15. Planning for Regional Depopulation in Greater Buffalo Justin Hollander and Bernard Cahill 16. Innovation and Shrinking Cities: What can we learn from Cleveland’s regional innovation system? Michael S. Fogarty and Gasper A. Garofalo 17. Halle: A shrinking city in Eastern Germany Florian Bartholomae and Chang Woon Nam 18. The Urban Area of Naples: From shrinking city to the metropolitan area Gerardo Schettino 19. Losing Households in a House Divided: The case of Belfast Frank Gaffikin and Ken Sterrett Part IV: General Issues 20. Compact Development as a Factor in Income Resilience among Shrinking Counties in the United States: Statistical analysis with policy implications Arthur C. Nelson, Susan Petheram and Reid Ewing 21. Environmental Impacts of Shrinking Cities Tilman Rave 22. Conclusions Harry W. Richardson and Chang Woon Nam

About the Editors

Harry W. Richardson is the James Irvine Chair of Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Southern California, USA.

Chang Woon Nam is Senior Economist at the Ifo Institute, Munich, Germany.

About the Series

Regions and Cities

In today’s globalised, knowledge-driven and networked world, regions and cities have assumed heightened significance as the interconnected nodes of economic, social and cultural production, and as sites of new modes of economic governance and policy experimentation. This book series brings together incisive and critically engaged international and interdisciplinary research on this resurgence of regions and cities, and should be of interest to geographers, economists, sociologists, political scientists and cultural scholars, as well as to policy-makers involved in regional and urban development.

For more information on the Regional Studies Association visit

Did you know? There is a 30% discount available to RSA members on books in the Regions and Cities series, and other subject related Taylor and Francis books and e-books including Routledge titles. To order just e-mail Joanna Swieczkowska,, or phone on +44 (0) 207 017 6364 and declare your RSA membership.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Economics / General
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Development / Sustainable Development