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  • Thumbnail for The Fractal Structure of Cities: A Mathematical Approach to Urbanization
    The Fractal Structure of Cities: A Mathematical Approach to Urbanization by Verchota, Allie Milla

    The theory of fractal geometry is a relatively new concept in Mathematics. However, it is a concept humans are very familiar with. Most commonly we think about fractals as they relate to objects found in nature. For example fractal analysis can be used to define human structures like cities. We will focus on one way of defining and analyzing cities, by calculating their fractal dimension. This thesis will connect fractal dimension as it relates to city analysis via area and length. We will draw some conclusions regarding social implications of city life based on the theory of connectivity, fractal theory, and the parallel between connectedness and fractility. These types of questions will be open ended and allow for inquiries on further research into the science of cities.

  • Thumbnail for The effect of housing density and proximity to surface water on bee community assemblages
    The effect of housing density and proximity to surface water on bee community assemblages by Sarro, Erica

    Urbanization and anthropogenic development across North America are contributing to habitat loss and fragmentation. Urbanization also alters surface water systems, resulting in the elimination, alteration, and creation of aquatic ecosystems. Habitat loss is one factor contributing to the current native bee and honeybee (Apis mellifera) population declines across the continent. Previous studies on the effect of urbanization on bee populations have produced conflicting results, which suggest that further research is required. The effect of surface water availability on bee populations is not well studied. Using bee bowl traps and sweep net sampling techniques in household yards across the Twin Cities in Minnesota, I assessed bee abundance and bee community composition across an urban to rural gradient using housing density as a measure of degree of urbanization. I also examined and compared bee communities in yard sites both near to and far from major surface waters. Specifically, I tested the hypothesis that bee community assemblages are affected by both housing density and proximity to water, independently. I found no significant difference in bee abundance across the urban to rural gradient or at varying distances from water. However, I found a positive correlation between yard size and bee abundance and a significantly different community composition of bees near to and far from water. The results of this study imply that bee populations are not affected by housing density alone, and that other factors, such as habitat patch size as measured by yard size, may be contributing to reported declines in bee populations. Results also imply that altering surface waters in urban areas can impact bee community composition. These results can help guide future studies and inform urban planning and surface water alteration methods in order to conserve bee populations.

  • Thumbnail for The Fractal Structure of Cities: A Mathematical Approach to Urbanization
    The Fractal Structure of Cities: A Mathematical Approach to Urbanization by Verchota, Allie Milla

    The theory of fractal geometry is a relatively new concept in Mathematics. However, it is a concept humans are very familiar with. Most commonly we think about fractals as they relate to objects found in nature. For example fractal analysis can be used to define human structures like cities. We will focus on one way of defining and analyzing cities, by calculating their fractal dimension. This thesis will connect fractal dimension as it relates to city analysis via area and length. We will draw some conclusions regarding social implications of city life based on the theory of connectivity, fractal theory, and the parallel between connectedness and fractility. These types of questions will be open ended and allow for inquiries on further research into the science of cities.

  • Thumbnail for The effect of industrial composition on metropolitan population growth
    The effect of industrial composition on metropolitan population growth by Brooks, Jordan Saunders

    Theories of urban development stress the impact of knowledge spillovers in generating the positive externalities necessary for growth. The mechanism for generating these externalities, however, is a source of contention. They can arise, as articulated by Romer among others, from efficiencies derived by concentration of industry; from industry diversity due to inter-industry spillovers, as proposed by Jacobs; or from some interaction between the two. This study utilizes both fixed-effects ordinary least squares and differenced general method of movements models to determine the effect of concentration in specific industries as well as composition of the city as a whole on future population growth. Using a data set that includes industry-specific employment and demographic data for 313 metropolitan areas in the United States from 1969 to 2008, this study finds strong evidence that important knowledge spillovers occur between industries and mixed evidence for the existence of meaningful externalities within industries.

  • Thumbnail for Brain Drain from Small City USA: Liberal Art School Students’ Relationship to Their Hometowns and their Aspirational Locations
    Brain Drain from Small City USA: Liberal Art School Students’ Relationship to Their Hometowns and their Aspirational Locations by Smith, Anna

    Research shows that educated, talented young people are moving in droves to big “superstar cities”—cities with high levels of innovation, diversity, and capital. College graduates must make a decision of where they will chose to live and pursue their careers. The research presented in this paper seeks to understand the relationship between college students’ attitude towards their hometown and their aspirational locations. Research was conducting through 11 in-depth interviews with current third and fourth year students at Colorado College. The key finding was that the liberal arts school experience was the biggest influencer in where the students see themselves living in the future.

  • Thumbnail for Rural To Urban Migration in China
    Rural To Urban Migration in China by Li, Jiameng

    During the past forty years, China has experienced possibly the largest amount of internal population migration in history where one-quarter of the population migrated from either village to cities or small cities to big cities. While most of the people chose to retain their double-residential status both in the rural and urban areas, there is still a large number of people hoping that they could settle in the cities and be incorporated as part of China’s urbanization process, but the Chinese Hukou system(Household registration) hinders a lot of the migrants from doing so. There have been constant reforms carried out with respect to the Hukou system and the focus of this paper draws on the policy implications from the Hukou reform and whether the migration pattern has changed following the Hukou reform.