Zipf ’s Law for cities: estimation of regression function parameters based on the weight of American urban areas and Polish towns
Keywordscities, city size distribution, weight of cities, Zipf’s Law, rank-size rule, weighted regression
The paper aims at presentation of a methodology where the classical linear regression model is modified to guarantee more realistic estimations and lower parameter oscillations for a specific urban system. That can be achieved by means of the weighted regression model which is based on weights ascribed to individual cities. The major shortcoming of the methods used so far – especially the classical simple linear regression – is the treatment of individual cities as points carrying the same weight, in consequence of which the linear regression poorly matches the empirical distribution of cities. The aim is reached in a severalstage process: demonstration of the drawbacks of the linear parameter estimation methods traditionally used for the purposes of urban system analyses; introduction
of the weighted regression which to a large extent diminishes specific drawbacks; and empirical verification of the method with the use of the input data for the USA and Poland.
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