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Lookup NU author(s): Emeritus Professor Mike Coombes
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).
Labour market areas and other functional regions (FRs) are increasingly used withinresearch and policy, but how FRs are best defined is an unresolved issue. This isimportant because the policy impacts, or the research results, will differ depending onthe specific FR boundaries used. As a result of this sensitivity (termed the ModifiableAreal Unit Problem), quantitative metrics are needed so that differing sets of FRboundaries can be evaluated. To meet this need the paper firstly reviews the conceptand use of labour market areas – the form of FRs most widely used in policy – toidentify relevant criteria for evaluating any regionalisation comprising a set of FRs. Nexta range of potential measurable indicators for each of the criteria is defined. Thesecandidate indicators are then exemplified by applying them to a huge number ofalternative sets of FRs. From this empirical evidence a short-list of preferred indicatorsis identified, creating a statistical ‘toolbox’ for evaluating sets of FRs. The paper endsby first sketching possible processes within which applying the indicators can helppolicy-makers with a decision over the appropriate set of FRs for a specific policy,before finally outlining some potential future research developments.
Author(s): Martínez-Bernabeu L, Coombes M, Casado-Díaz J-M
Publication type: Article
Publication status: Published
Journal: Applied Spatial Analysis and Policy
Print publication date: 01/09/2020
Online publication date: 08/11/2019
Acceptance date: 09/09/2019
Date deposited: 06/09/2019
ISSN (print): 1874-463X
ISSN (electronic): 1874-4621
Publisher: Springer Netherlands
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