Australian Urbanisation Early 1900's

2334 Words Jul 25th, 2008 10 Pages
The process of urbanisation is a central feature of Australian history. By 1900 over two-thirds of Australians were living in areas that were classified as urban. The growth of these cities was encouraged by various factors; the interaction and engagement of economic, demographic, political and social characteristics are definitely the key features that promoted the urbanisation of Australia. However, with the development of Australia came problems that people living in cities had to face. Environmental and health difficulties were to be over come in the city suburbs while economic depression followed after a period of prosperity and progress.

Economic factors are fundamental in determining urban structure. Cities can be seen as a form
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Unlike in Britain, urbanisation had stimulated the growth of industrialisation.

By the nineteenth century, Australia had a relatively affluent, well-housed, well-fed and a healthy population. The first increase in population occurred in 1830 when a bounty system, to catch escaped convicts, was introduced and immigration was assisted on a large scale. During the 1850’s the gold rushes bought the next influx of immigrants and Australia’s population more than doubled over a period of ten years. In this time before 1860, population grew largely due to immigration rather than natural increase. In most urban areas a higher rate of population or ‘an increasing degree of urbanisation’ may be gained through natural increase, from immigration or a sizeable movement from rural to urban areas. In Australia it was a merging of these three factors that encouraged urbanisation. Yet, over seas migration was the most important source of Australian metropolitan population growth, followed closely by natural increase. Rural to urban drift of population was much less important, except during the post gold-rush periods. The demographic variables such as age structure, fertility, mortality, and marriage rates were also of considerable economic, social and political significance, advancing
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