Educated Cities and Regional Centralization: Spatial Trends in Students' Location in Denmark, 1982-2013

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This paper provides an overview of Danish student to population ratios in post-primary education from 1982 to 2013. Using administrative register data I document a nationally increased share of enrolled students to population over the 32 years period. The increase followed a pattern of regional centralization where the shares of students rose significantly more in urban municipalities than non-urban municipalities. The highest shares of students as well as fastest increases were seen in the municipalities of the four largest cities, Copenhagen, Århus, Odense, and Aalborg. At the national level, the increases in shares of students to population was driven by medium length and long tertiary as well as high school enrollment. The tertiary enrolled students, however, were unproportionally centred in the urban municipalities. Non-urban municipalities had relatively higher levels of high school and vocational education students to population both in 1982 and 2013. The paper is concluded with suggestions for future research linking these patterns of regional centralization to challenges such as technological skill-bias and an increasing importance of continuous learning, as well as inequality and social mobility.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherCenter for Research on Regional Dynamics and Inequality, Aalborg University
Number of pages57
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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