First Advisor

Lee J. Haggerty

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.) in Sociology






Cities and towns -- Pacific Northwest -- Growth, Urban economics



Physical Description

1 online resource (156 p.)


Contrary to popular belief, small cities, located outside Standard Metropolitan Statistical Areas (SMSA's) and generally referred to as nonmetropolitan cities, have not been declining in population and withering away; rather, they have been growing and prospering in all regions of the country, albeit their growth varies considerably.

It is this variation in growth rates of nonmetropolitan places in the northwest (and the factors associated with this variation) which is the focus of this thesis. Research literature in this area indicates a reciprocal relationship between the nature of economic activities in nonmetropolitan cities and their growth patterns. In an attempt to more fully understand the nature of this reciprocal relationship, this research employs a longitudinal design. The effects of the previous growth (of the city's hinterland as well as the city itself), ecological position within a system of cities (location on or off an interstate highway, distance to nearest Standard Metropolitan Statistical Area, and proximity to places of varying sizes within the same county), and character of economic activity in the hinterland (State Economic Area extractive employment) impact upon both the economic functions of those nonmetropolitan places and their varying growth rates. This approach allows for a fuller explanation of how the economic organization of these communities operates as an intervening influence between these factors and subsequent population growth.


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