U.S. Environmental Protection Agency


Date of this Version



Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization 78 (2011) 152–159; doi:10.1016/j.jebo.2010.12.015


In this paper we analyze the evolution of city size distributions over time in a regional urban system. This urban complex system is in constant flux with changing groups and city migration across existing and newly created groups. Using group formation as an emergent property, transition probabilities across the different groups were calculated. While short-term transition appears chaotic in the intermediate and lower rank groups, long-term transition across all rank groups reveals striking system structure overtime.