Population decline has been studied comprehensively by academics around the world. We know a lot about the causes of population decline. Deindustrialization and low fertility are reality for many European regions. But how come, in the same region, some places grow and some are shrinking? What is causing this difference?
Josje Hoekveld explores this questions in her article: Spatial differentiation of population development in a declining region: the case of Saarland.*
Using former mining region of Saarland (Germany) she examines intra-regional differentiation in population development. Three main conclusions for the differentiation are given: (1) the distinguished population development trajectories in the past; (2) the spatial distribution of the amenities in the region and (3) the spatial distribution and accessibility of housing opportunities.
This article is very useful for conceptualizing spatial differentiation in regions faced with population decline. Complex analysis reveals that the mechanisms behind interregional differentiation are more complex than usually presented in decline debate.
* Hoekveld, J. (2015). Spatial differentiation of population development in a declining region: the case of Saarland. Geografiska annaler: Series B, Vol.97(1).