An Analysis of the Reasons for the Decline of the Position of Tabriz Metropolis in the Urban System of Iran and the Prediction of its Population and Position by 2031

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Professor, Department of Geography and Urban Planning, Faculty of Planning and Environmental Sciences, University of Tabriz, Tabriz, Iran

2 Associate Professor, Department of Urban Planning and Design, University of Kurdistan, Iran and Senior Postdoc Researcher, Institute for Urban and Regional Research, the Austrian Academy of Sciences, Austria

3 PhD Student of Geography and Urban Planning, Faculty of Planning and Environmental Sciences, University of Tabriz, Tabriz, Iran


Demographic changes in recent decades have led to rapid changes in Iran's urban system and its hierarchy, with one of its consequences being the increase or decrease in the ranking of cities in this system. The present study examines the position of Tabriz metropolis in the urban system of Iran from 1335 to 1395, and by forecasting the population of this metropolis by 2031, it tries to determine the future position of this city in the urban system of Iran. This study is practical in terms of purpose and descriptive-analytical in terms of nature and research method. The data in the present study were obtained through document analysis and field study (questionnaire and interview). Interviews were used to understand the causes of emigration and a questionnaire was used to understand the causes of fertility decline in Tabriz metropolis. The sample sizes for both instruments were determined based on the saturation principle. The exponential model, Spectrum software, and rank mobility index were used to predict the demographic factors, population forecast, and the study of metropolitan rank changes in the urban system, respectively. The obtained results showed that the decrease in fertility rate and migration are the main reasons for the sharp decline in population growth in the metropolis of Tabriz, with the economic reasons being the main reason. In addition, assuming the fertility rates of 1.5, 1.8, and 2.1 in Tabriz, we will see 1.64, 1.69, and 1.74 million increases in the population of the city, respectively, as well as a decrease in the population of minors and a doubling of elderly population over 65 by the year 2031. The results of population forecast show that the position of Tabriz metropolis will be stabilized as the sixth largest city of Iran's urban system by 2031, but its distance from the seventh metropolis (Qom) will be less, which requires special attention and proper management to prevent its rank from falling again.


Main Subjects

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Volume 13, Issue 1
Spring & Summer
April 2021
Pages 83-114
  • Receive Date: 17 August 2020
  • Revise Date: 24 October 2020
  • Accept Date: 24 October 2020