The regional density function and the definition of regional boundaries

John B. Parr, Darryl Holden

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Citation (Scopus)


The population density function is usually applied at the level of the urban or metropolitan area. In this chapter, however, it is examined at the scale of the region, namely, an economic region of a nodal (rather than homogenous) type. The regional density function to be employed has an inverse power form. This is shown to differ significantly from the negative exponential structure typically associated with urban areas. The primary purpose of the investigation is to explore the possibility of using the density function as a means of determining the boundary between adjacent economic regions. Initially, the boundary is examined in terms of a point and then, more conventionally, as a line. After discussing several possible extensions, the results are compared with findings of other theoretical models concerned with the specification of boundaries, but based on wholly different approaches.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRegional Science Matters
Subtitle of host publicationStudies Dedicated to Walter Isard
EditorsPeter Nijkamp, Adam Rose, Karima Kourtit
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jul 2014


  • regional science
  • regional density
  • spatial problems
  • environment
  • economic regions
  • boundaries
  • demographic analysis
  • public policy
  • regional growth


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