A metropolitan region (in Switzerland mostly metropolitan area ) is the surrounding area of a metropolis connected to it . Metropolitan regions are seen as the “engines” of the social, societal and economic development of a country.
In Germany, European Metropolitan Regions (EMR) were first defined in 1995 by the Ministerial Conference for Spatial Planning . The term should not be confused with the term Europaregion (Euregio) , which is used to designate regions that are on the territory of at least two countries. A Euregio is rarely referred to as a metropolitan region .
In contrast to an agglomeration , which consists of a core city and its suburban, rather densely built-up suburb area (also called conurbation or bacon belt ), the term metropolitan region is broader and also includes large rural areas that connect with the regional centers economic ties or commuter flows are closely related. The cooperation in metropolitan regions is also intended to improve the planning of urban development and transport projects.
Large cities that take on similar functions to the metropolises for their surrounding areas, but are smaller than metropolises with around 100,000 to 300,000 inhabitants, are referred to as regiopolises . Similarly, their interdependence is called the regiopole region .
Functions of a metropolitan region
The functionalities of a metropolitan region can be assessed using four criteria that are relatively easy to determine:
- Decision-making and control function
- There is a high concentration of political and economic institutions in a metropolitan region. The largest companies in a country or in the world have their headquarters or important branches there. This can be, for example, government offices, company offices, international organizations or non-governmental organizations .
- Innovation and competition function
- A metropolitan region is the engine of social, cultural and technological development. This is also characterized by a large number of research and scientific institutions. Large cultural events can also be organized, as the necessary infrastructure , such as B. theaters or stadiums are available.
- Gateway function
- A metropolitan region is a "hub". Exchange of knowledge and information is possible without any major problems, as it is very easy to reach. Indicators for this are international airports, transport hubs, the position of Internet servers, trade fairs, etc.
- Symbol function
- They combine "a high degree of historical, political, cultural and urban development importance and a corresponding international reputation"
Metropolitan areas in the world
The largest metropolitan regions in the world are the Pearl River Delta around China's Shēnzhèn and Zhūhǎi special economic zones as well as the megacities of Guǎngzhōu , Fóshān , Dōngguǎn and the special administrative areas of Hong Kong and Macau with 40.7 million people and the metropolitan region of Tokyo with 37.2 million people (2008).
The largest metropolitan regions in Europe
The cooperation level of the EU metropolitan regions , founded as METREX in 1996 on the initiative of the Scottish Strathclyde Regional Council (Strathclyde Regional Council) , defines a metropolitan region as an agglomeration of more than 500,000 inhabitants and assumes 120 metropolitan regions for the EU, in which 60% of the inhabitants of the member states live and work. However, this definition of the term also meant that, for example in relation to Germany, large parts of the country would be metropolitan regions. In England, local authorities were founded with the Metropolitan Counties , which are supposed to be adapted to the urban structure that has evolved. This replaced the conventional division of counties in some metropolitan areas. In France, too, some metropolitan areas coincide with the actual regions as local authorities. The status of the metropolitan region in Germany as a meta-formation that is intended to encourage cross-corporate cooperation is less common in Europe. However, there are also examples of transnational regions. There are almost twice as many metropolitan regions with over five million inhabitants on the American continent as in Europe , 13 of them in the USA alone ; However, in terms of area, these are often very broad and partly sparsely populated outside the central cities.
The following list is based on data from Eurostat and their narrower definition of metropolitan areas as metropolitan areas from 2015. For example, the Ruhr area is regarded as a metropolitan region, not the larger interpretation variant as the Rhine-Ruhr metropolitan region . For comparison, the largest city conglomerates such as Rhine-Ruhr or Randstad are also listed. However, these figures are estimates and are therefore given in brackets.
Delimitation by the Ministerial Conference on Spatial Planning
In Germany , the Ministerial Conference for Spatial Planning (MKRO) underlined the importance of the metropolitan regions in Germany ("European metropolitan regions") with its resolution on the spatial planning policy framework of action in 1995: "As engines of social, economic, social and cultural development, they should improve performance and competitiveness Preserve Germany and Europe and contribute to accelerating the European integration process ”.
The MKRO initially defined six European metropolitan regions (EMR) for Germany in 1995, another EMR was added in 1997 and another four EMRs in 2005, so that there are currently eleven EMRs in Germany. These were not determined and delimited according to spatial structural realities, but normatively, whereby the generosity of the delimitation in particular shows considerable methodological differences. The population figures are therefore only comparable to a very limited extent. Some EMRs, such as Hanover-Braunschweig-Göttingen , contain very large rural areas and core cities that are far apart, while others are much more tightly tailored. Many of the regions have cross-border links or are being developed in the same way as the future metropolitan region of Szczecin .
Since the designation of the “smaller” EMR in 2005, every German city with over 400,000 inhabitants has been the core city of a “metropolitan region” ( Dresden has now left the metropolitan region of Central Germany again). As a result, the term has moved significantly away from its original meaning (see article Metropolis ).
In addition to the strongly global metropolitan regions, there are 41 conurbations around smaller core cities in Germany . Among these, the 25 regiopolises identified in a 2008 study by the University of Kassel occupy a special position as development engines for their regions.
The federal government relies on the model of decentralized concentration in the interdependence of the metropolitan regions .
List of metropolitan regions in Germany
When comparing the metropolitan regions, it should be noted that the demarcation of a metropolitan region often corresponds to the different views of the individual associations, so that a meaningful comparison of the key figures according to inhabitants and area as well as economic strength can only take place to a limited extent. The delimitation can be independent of any membership of the cities and districts. In February 2017, the former Rhine-Ruhr region dissolved with the establishment of the Rhineland metropolitan region.
With the exception of the Rhine-Ruhr metropolitan region, the German metropolitan regions are very sparsely populated by international standards. Six metropolitan regions even fall below the national average of 229 inhabitants per square kilometer. Therefore, a comparison on an international level, without detailed knowledge of the individual regions, makes only limited sense.
With around 545,000 inhabitants, Dresden is the largest city in Germany that does not belong to any metropolitan region.
|colour||Metropolitan area||Million inhabitants
( BBR forecast)
|Berlin / Brandenburg||5.98||5.96||5.79||−0.35||−3.00|
|Metropolitan regions in Germany||57.72||57.54||56.66||−0.30||−1.53|
The information on the number of inhabitants comes from the Report Regional Monitoring 2012 , which the Initiative Group European Metropolitan Regions in Germany (IKM) publishes together with the Federal Office for Building and Regional Planning (BBR). The delimitations used for this are based on district boundaries, so the specified population figures do not partly correspond to the actual population. The delimitations correspond to the status reported on July 1, 2012 and are subject to arbitrary changes, so that the area and population figures may no longer correspond to the current status.
Delimitation by the statistical office of the European Union
The Statistical Office of the European Union ( Eurostat ) in unity with the OECD defines metro (politan) regions in a different way: these are functional urban areas with more than 250,000 inhabitants.
Metropolitan areas in Switzerland
According to the current, dynamic spatial concept of the Swiss Federal Statistical Office (FSO), only the three areas Zurich , Geneva-Lausanne and Basel are defined in the statistical room category metropolitan areas. Neighboring agglomerations are included in these large agglomerations if more than a twelfth of the employees from the neighboring agglomeration work in the large agglomeration. Bern and the Regione insubrica in the canton of Ticino form multipolar agglomeration systems . Only the agglomeration of Bern itself is called a metropolitan area. Como - Chiasso - Mendrisio are defined as the Swiss- Italian neighboring agglomeration of the metropolis of Milan.
The statistical spatial categories of agglomeration and metropolitan areas are used, among other things, to compare economic strength spatially and are not necessarily identical to political territory. The definition is intended as a dynamic spatial concept and is revised every ten years in accordance with the results of the federal census. The last update dates from the year 2000. The delimitation of agglomerations and metropolitan areas by the Federal Statistical Office has no legally binding force.
Since the FSO's definition of urban areas, agglomerations and metropolitan areas is applied across borders, only the metropolitan areas of Zurich and Bern are completely on Swiss soil. Around 70% of the Swiss live in one of these five areas. Until 2004 the FSO defined five metropolitan areas. However, this division into five is statistically too small for comparisons within a European framework.
The metropolitan area of Zurich extends from Zug to Schaffhausen and from Frauenfeld to Baden . As a financial and trading center, media center, location for education and research and as a transport hub, it is the most important center in Switzerland. Events such as the Street Parade , the international athletics meeting and cultural institutions such as the opera house and the theater have an international appeal. In addition, Zurich Airport contributes to the intercontinental accessibility of the area. In July 2009, politicians and business representatives founded a private association under the name that aims to strengthen the economic interests of the Zurich metropolitan area.
The transnational metropolitan region of Basel is a trinational living and economic area. The research and economic area of life sciences (with international headquarters for the pharmaceutical and chemical industry), banks ( Bank for International Settlements ), transport and logistics (inland port in Switzerland), trade fairs (Basel World, Art Basel) and culture (3-divisional Theater, Beyeler Museum ), are particularly well represented in the area, also known as metrobasel . With the Basel-Mulhouse airport, the region also has an airport that has grown significantly in recent years.
There are other terms for the urban area of Basel, namely RegioTriRhena , Trinationaler Eurodistrict Basel (TEB) and Trinational Agglomeration Basel (TAB) . The RegioTriRhena, which is composed similarly to “metrobasel”, but extends further north (Germany and France), has 2.3 million inhabitants.
Geneva-Lausanne is an important financial center. With Geneva-Cointrin , the French-speaking metropolitan area has an international airport and is the headquarters of numerous international organizations. In July 2009, gave Bern and Romandy (French-speaking Switzerland) announced its intention to want in future to appear in public together as a utility room.
Metropolitan regions - division into five according to BFS
|Metropolitan area||Areas||associated Swiss agglomerations (cities)||Inhabitants
|Zurich||Canton of Zurich and neighboring areas||1.68 million||2,104|
|Geneva-Lausanne||Lake Geneva region / Riviera , some parts of the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region (F)||Geneva (CH / F), Lausanne , Yverdon-les-Bains , Vevey - Montreux||1.20 million||1.014|
|Basel||Northwestern Switzerland (CH), southeast of the Haut-Rhin (F) department, Lörrach district (D)||Basel , Delémont||0.80 million||-|
|Bern||part of the Espace Mittelland||Bern , Burgdorf , Thun , Biel / Bienne , Freiburg , individual town Lyss||0.70 million||938|
|Ticino||Southern Ticino, Como (I)||Locarno , Bellinzona , Lugano , Chiasso - Mendrisio||0.53 million||731|
them in Switzerland
|approx. 5 million
approx. 4.5 million
Agglomerations - permanent resident population 2010–14
Spatial distribution: agglomerations, urban and rural areas
Permanent resident population in urban and rural areas - 2010–14
|Urban areas 1)||6,636.9||6,711.9||6,785.6||6,873.6||6,959.1|
|Rural areas 1)||1,233.3||1,242.7||1,253.5||1,266.0||1,278.6|
|The largest agglomerations 1)|
|The biggest cities|
|1) According to FSO typology , urban space 2012 ; Source: STATPOP|
The largest metropolitan regions in North and South America
The largest metropolitan areas in Asia
|rank||Name of the metropolitan area||Biggest cities||country|
|1||Guangzhou Foshan||Guangzhou , Foshan||People's Republic of China||49.5|
|3||Shanghai||Shanghai||People's Republic of China||39|
|12||Hong Kong-Shenzhen||Shenzhen , Hong Kong||People's Republic of China||21st|
|13||Beijing||Beijing||People's Republic of China||20.8|
|14th||Osaka-Kobe-Kyoto (Keihanshin)||Osaka , Kobe , Kyoto||Japan||17.9|
The largest metropolitan areas in Africa
The term metropolitan region is originally an informal term description for closely interwoven regions with an urban character. This emerged from the increasing importance of areas that function as an economic, social and cultural unit beyond their spatial proximity and whose development processes are increasingly running in sync. The perception of these areas has international appeal and strengthens the formation and interpretation of terms in the feedback effect.
The concept of the metropolitan region was formally formulated for Germany by resolution of the Ministerial Conference for Spatial Planning on March 8, 1995. Six “European metropolitan regions” were named in the first edition: Berlin / Brandenburg, Hamburg, Munich, Rhine-Main, Rhine-Ruhr and Stuttgart. These partly correspond to the characterization as an urbanized metropolitan region with a global presence ( mega-city ). The Saxon triangle as a regional area is already named there, and another four metropolitan regions were named on April 28, 2005.
Recognizing that structural development should take place within the framework of regions with international reach, the sense of “being a metropolitan region” has become a sure-fire success. As a result, other regions are striving to distinguish themselves as metropolitan regions in terms of spatial policy, while also receiving funding at the federal level. This includes the transformation of the Ruhr area from a municipal association to a legally independent regional association of the Ruhr . In the Hamburg metropolitan region, other cities are trying to join the original association.
Even much smaller German metropolitan areas are now trying to qualify as a European metropolitan region within the meaning of the MKRO (Ministerial Conference for Spatial Planning). In the course of profiling as a metropolitan region, there are certainly friction losses. In naturally grown metropolitan regions like Berlin, the synchronicity of political events simply follows the actual synchronicity in the economic and cultural life of the region. Where politics precedes life, however, there conflicting interests are not necessarily smoothed out by social life, but have to be negotiated with difficulty at the table.
Counter-concept to the metropolitan region
The Bloomington School or Indiana School, a branch of economics and political science, arose out of a counter-movement to the Metropolitan Reform Movement of the 1970s: While the latter wanted to re-plan the administrative structures and units of metropolitan regions in a centralized manner , its representatives stood up for the maintenance of the existing, supposedly inefficient redundant structures. Vincent Ostrom, for example, carried out empirical studies to support her thesis ( The Organization of Government in Metropolitan Areas , 1961). The best-known representative of the Bloomington School is the Nobel Prize winner Elinor Ostrom .
- Blue banana
- Metropolitan complex
- Metropolitan area in Brazil
- Cosmopolitan city
- List of countries by urbanization
- List of the largest cities in the European Union
- List of metropolitan areas in the United States
- Norbert Fischer : Micro landscape and metropolitan region. About the spatial change in the Hamburg area 1950–2000. In: Dirk Brietzke , Norbert Fischer, Arno Herzig (eds.): Hamburg and its northern German area. Hamburg 2007, ISBN 3-934632-24-6 , pp. 401-414.
- Wolfgang König: The European metropolitan region as a control theory problem. Political and social initiatives to build up the Rhine-Neckar metropolitan region. Marburg 2007, ISBN 978-3-8288-9354-2 .
- Mathias König: The European metropolitan region. New representative of regional interests. Political lobbying by the Rhine-Neckar metropolitan region. Marburg 2007, ISBN 978-3-8288-9353-5 .
- Norbert Fischer: From the Hamburg area to the metropolitan region. Stormarn's history since 1980. DOBU-Verlag, Hamburg 2008, ISBN 3-934632-31-9 .
- Jens Wassermann: The Hanover region - regional cooperation against the background of an institutionalized local authority. VDM Verlag Dr. Müller, Saarbrücken 2007, ISBN 978-3-8364-5577-0 .
- Nuremberg Chamber of Commerce and Industry for Middle Franconia (Ed.): Metropolitan Region Nuremberg. 4th edition. Verlag Kommunikation & Wirtschaft GmbH, Oldenburg 2006, ISBN 3-88363-258-9 .
- Federal Office for Building and Regional Planning
- METREX - European network of administrations in metropolitan areas
- Metrobasel - example of a metropolitan region
- German Metropolitan Regions - Initiative Group European Metropolitan Regions in Germany
- Metropolitan region and spatial change
- Zurich metropolitan area
- Metropolitan area of Basel
- Zurich is expanding , Neue Zürcher Zeitung , July 28, 2006
- definition | Regiopoles Germany. (No longer available online.) Archived from the original on November 4, 2016 ; accessed on May 8, 2017 . Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.
- Bronger, Dirk & Trettin, Lutz (2011): Megastädte - Global Cities TODAY: The Age of Asia? Berlin u. a .: LIT-Verlag
- Database - Eurostat. Retrieved May 8, 2017 (UK English).
- Population on January 1, 2017 by age group, gender and metropolitan areas. Retrieved May 25, 2017 .
- IT.NRW - Central Division 14 "Marketing and Public Relations": Information and Technology North Rhine-Westphalia (IT.NRW) - Population figures based on the census of May 9, 2011. (No longer available online.) Archived from the original on July 14 2016 ; accessed on March 25, 2018 . Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.
- Major Agglomerations of the World. Retrieved December 16, 2018 .
- Development the metropolitan region of Szczecin ( Memento of the original from March 5, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. , rbgp.pl (PDF; 1.7 MB)
- Jürgen Aring, Iris Reuther (Department of Urban and Regional Planning, University of Kassel): Presentation “Regiopoles. The small cities in times of globalization. ”A research project on the city and region. (PDF; 1.2 MB) (No longer available online.) Formerly in the original ; accessed on June 13, 2009 (winter semester 2007/2008 "). ( Page no longer available , search in web archives ) Info: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.
- Klaus Brake, Rainer Danielzyk, Martin Karsten: Decentralized concentration a model with special challenges for intermunicipal cooperation
- Regional Association FrankfurtRheinMain: Facts and Figures - Metropolitan Region FrankfurtRheinMain. (PDF) Regionalverband FrankfurtRheinMain, February 4, 2019, accessed on April 1, 2018 .
- Initiative Group European Metropolitan Regions in Germany Regional Monitoring 2012 - Data and maps on the European Metropolitan Regions in Germany (PDF; 7.6 MB) , as of November 1, 2012
- European regional and city statistics: Territorial typologies for European cities and metropolitan regions
- The Federal Council: Spatial structures for a dynamic Switzerland based on solidarity. Retrieved June 8, 2017 .
- Archived copy ( memento of the original from March 26, 2010 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.
- Schuler Martin, Joye Dominique, Dessemontet Pierre: Eidgenössische Volkszählung 2000. The spatial structures of Switzerland. FSO, Neuchâtel 2005.
- Zurich is expanding. The agglomeration as the center of a European "metropolitan region". In: Neue Zürcher Zeitung . July 26, 2006, accessed July 18, 2013 .
- Home - Metropolitan Area Zurich. Retrieved May 8, 2017 .
- Agglomerations ( Memento of the original dated May 4, 2009 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. , BFS at bfs.admin.ch
- Macrometrópole Paulista . Retrieved May 9, 2019 (Portuguese).
- CBSA-EST2012-01.csv. In: census.gov. Retrieved July 1, 2013 .
- City Mayors: Largest cities and their mayors in 2011 - Introduction