Rural Migration and Shrinkage Transformation Processes in Mexican Countryside

Rural Migration and Shrinkage Transformation Processes in Mexican Countryside

José G. Vargas-Hernández (University of Guadalajara, Mexico)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-0111-5.ch016


The purpose of this chapter is to analyze the empirical-theoretical approaches to shrinking cities in Mexico. The analysis intents to answer the challenges posed by economic and demographic tendencies according to economic changes, using the theories and models and no to fall down victim of simplistic projections and conjectures and theories based more in speculations rather than on facts. The method used here is critical analysis of economic, social, and political tendencies in relation to the situation of shrinking cities in México. The results of this analysis lead to the finding that the shrinkage process in México, as a developing economy does not follow the same patterns of well developed countries, where increase in shrinking cities occurs since the middle of the 1950s and the use of incentives in some localities to attract economic growth have had modest success in terms of turning around the shrinking process.
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Macroeconomic Theory Perspective

From the macroeconomic perspective, economic shrinkage is analyzed according to its functions in the economic system in which it occurs. Macroeconomics and neoclassical models explain shrinkage decision as a cost-benefit calculation (Davis, Stecklov and Winters, 2002, p. 292). The classic economic theory implies that agents can determine with certainty the occurrence of events and anticipate the utility of results which would, in their turn, provoke some future events. Agents also have the capacity to compare alternatives and choose in favor of the best utility.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Residential Segregation: A physical separation of two or more groups into different neighborhoods or a form of segregation that sorts population groups into various neighborhood contexts and shapes the living environment at the neighborhood level.

Indigenous People: (in this chapter): Groups specially protected in specified international or national legislation as having a set of specific rights based on their historical ties to a particular territory, and their cultural or historical distinctiveness from other populations.

Historical Materialism: A theory of socioeconomic development according to which changes in material conditions (technology and productive capacity) are the primary influence on how society and the economy are organized. Historical materialism looks for the causes of developments and changes in human society in the means by which humans collectively produce the necessities of life.

Corporative Town: A place where practically all stores and housing is owned by the one company that is the only employer. The company provides infrastructure (housing, stores, transportation, sewage and water) to enable workers to move there and live.

Green Revolution: Increasing of agricultural production worldwide, particularly in the developing world, beginning most markedly in the late 1960s.

Industrialization: A period of social and economic change that transforms a human group from an agrarian society into an industrial one.

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