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Mapping the Socioeconomic Landscape of Rural Sweden: Towards a Typology of Rural Areas
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Geography and Economic History, Economic and social geography.
2016 (English)In: Regional studies, ISSN 0034-3404, E-ISSN 1360-0591, Vol. 50, no 3, 460-474 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Definitions of the rural have been the subject of numerous academic papers. This paper argues that the a priori urban–rural continuum model should be abandoned in favour of a more open approach. In advancing this argument, a socioeconomic typology of rural Sweden is developed by means of cluster analysis. A total of 3983 areas were sorted into five clusters and16 sub-clusters. One-third of the rural population lives in the middle-class countryside within the urban shadow (12%) and working-class countryside within the urban shadow (22%); the bulk of the rural population lives in countryside outside the urban shadow (25%) and manufacturing periphery (28%); and a smaller share resides in the resource periphery (12%). It is concluded that location-specific typologies based on high-resolution data that avoid a priori assumptions of rurality give great insight into rural heterogeneity.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 50, no 3, 460-474 p.
Keyword [en]
Rural heterogeneity, Rural change, Rural typology, Regional development, Cluster analysis, Sweden
National Category
Human Geography
Research subject
Social and Economic Geography
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-91671DOI: 10.1080/00343404.2014.924618ISI: 000368717900006Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84902899203OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-91671DiVA: diva2:737649
Funder
Swedish Research Council Formas
Available from: 2014-08-13 Created: 2014-08-13 Last updated: 2017-12-05Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Growth and decline in rural Sweden: geographical distribution of employment and population 1960–2010
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Growth and decline in rural Sweden: geographical distribution of employment and population 1960–2010
2017 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Alternative title[sv]
Tillväxt och nedgång på svensk landsbygd : fördelning av befolkning och arbete 1960–2010
Abstract [en]

This thesis investigates the combination of changes in the population and employment into sectors in rural Sweden for the period 1960-2010. The aim is to describe and analyze the demographic changes together with the labour market changes, and to account for the spatial outcome of these changes by considering the heterogeneity of rural areas. The analysis departs from the framework of rural restructuring, where changes in employment and population in rural Sweden are interpreted as local products of the global processes of technological development, social modernization and globalization. Empirically, the analysis is based on a combination of longitudinal censuses and register data on the Swedish population covering the period 1960-2010.

The first part of the aim is achieved by applying a life-course perspective and exploiting the longitudinal nature of the data. The life-course perspective distinguishes between historical time and the age of individuals, making it possible to situate changes in employment and migration on the individual level. The second part of the aim is achieved through developing a typology of rural Sweden by doing a cluster analysis on SAMS-areas.

The results show that rural change after 1980 was characterized by de-industrialization and the rise of the urban service sector. The period was also characterized by regional urbanization rather than local urbanization. Peripheral urban and rural areas based on industrial employment found themselves with a declining economic motor, which meant that people had to find their source of income elsewhere. The migration stream in this period was thus increasingly directed towards metropolitan or large city centers, and their rural surroundings within commuting distance. However, the more fine-tuned spatial typology reveals that also a few areas in the rural periphery have experienced growth, these areas are mainly attractive places based on various kinds of tourism. It can thus be concluded that different rural areas have experienced, and will continue to experience, the shift from manufacturing to services differently, where some areas have grown in both demographic and employment terms while others have declined. In this sense the heterogeneity of rural areas are a product of both growth and decline – of old development paths that is reaching their end and of new development paths that will continue into the future.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå universitet, 2017. 76 p.
Series
GERUM, ISSN 1402-5205 ; 2017:3
Keyword
rural restructuring, rural heterogeneity, manufacturing decline, agricultural decline, urbanization, rural typology, life-course perspective, cluster analysis, Sweden
National Category
Human Geography
Research subject
Social and Economic Geography
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-139723 (URN)978-91-7601-769-2 (ISBN)
Public defence
2017-10-13, Hörsal C, Samhällsvetarhuset, 901 87, Umeå, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Funder
Swedish Research Council Formas, 2011-72
Available from: 2017-09-22 Created: 2017-09-20 Last updated: 2017-10-02Bibliographically approved

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Hedlund, Martin

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