Dublin’s high property prices belie the city’s relatively small population–just over 1.1 million within the county. This pales compared with the 22 million inhabitants recorded for the metropolitan region of New York, which has the largest population of all OECD urban regions, and accounts for about 8% of the total population of the US.
According to the 2007 edition of OECD Regions at a Glance, 46% of the total OECD population lived in urban regions and a third of the OECD population lived in large urban agglomerations, i.e. over 1.5 million inhabitants. In the Netherlands, two thirds of the population lived in highly populated urban regions, while the corresponding share in Japan, the US, Australia and Korea was approximately half. The highest concentration of population in one urban region occurs in Greece, where more than a third of the total population (36%) lives in the urban region of Athens. Regions at a Glance focuses on formal administrative boundaries, rather than metropolitan areas, which limits the size of some cities like Paris, whose administrative entity (Ville de Paris) is analogous to Manhattan, but whose wider urban region has over 10 million people. And though Britain is highly urbanised, with interwoven metropolitan regions blurring into the countryside, under this strict boundary definition, less than 10% of its population actually live in cities of over 1.5 million inhabitants.
©OECD Observer No. 260, March 2007
- OECD (2007), OECD Regions at a Glance, Paris.