Content №3 от 2020

Features of population distribution in Russia and Finland: impact of geographical factors and universities

The article considers the population dynamics in the regions of Russia and sub-regions of Finland. The purpose of this article is to assess the impact of geographical factors on the population dynamics and to identify opportunities for improvement with more advanced higher education and science by examining the two countries in contrast. We carry out a comparative analysis of data and point out the influence of the identified factors through regression analysis. Before market reforms, the farther a region was from Moscow, the faster its population grew. In the last 30 years, this trend was largely persistent for European regions; the situation in the Asian part of the country has changed for the opposite. A new correlation is found for European regions: the farther north a region is, the faster its population decreases. The same dependency manifested in Finland after the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the subsequent economic crisis: population dynamics in sub-regions deteriorates with increasing distance from Helsinki. Yet, if a sub-region has universities, it does not experience migration outflows to the capital. Almost all sub-regions without universities or their affiliates are losing population, while the ones where classical universities are located are gaining new residents. In Russia, universities have little effect on population changes. An increase in the number of students does not lead to an increase in the overall population. Russian regions, especially those on the periphery, do not deter young people from migration, lose both accumulated human capital and possibilities of future economic growth.

Druzhinin P. V.

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