Moving up and down the urban hierarchy: Age-articulated interregional migration flows in the Netherlands

de Jong, P. A., Brouwer, A. E. & McCann, P., Jul-2016, In : Annals of Regional Science. 57, 1, p. 145-164 20 p.

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  • Moving up and down the urban hierarchy Age-articulated

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The ‘age schedule of migration’ has been studied fairly extensively. Yet, its regional implications have received only limited attention. The highly cited seminal paper of Plane and Jurjevich (Prof Geogr 61(1):4–20, 2009) was demonstrated in a novel manner on the basis of US Census data that, when interregional migration flows are disaggregated by age, radically different patterns of net population redistribution are observable in the sense of upward and downward movements within the urban hierarchy of the USA. This study aims to demonstrate how interregional migration flows play out in a different geographic setting by replicating the methodological approach of Plane and Jurjevich (2009) in the case of the Netherlands, a country with a very different urban system and spatial population pattern to the USA. Our aim was to identify whether the differing geographical context leads to different upward and downward movements. The most notably marked flows or ‘demographically effective’ flows in the Netherlands are the movements made by young adults and older adults aged 75 and over. We also observe recently emerging differences in the migration patterns of retirees, with the ‘75 and older’ age cohort oriented towards smaller towns and rural areas, while the ‘65–74’ age cohort are increasingly oriented towards urban areas. In addition, we comment on the possible consequences of these differing patterns of age-articulated interregional flows when allied with the emerging demographic changes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)145-164
Number of pages20
JournalAnnals of Regional Science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jul-2016


  • interregional migration, urban hiuerchy

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