‘In spite of the vast literature that has come out in the last 25 years, our knowledge of the spatial incidence of economic growth remains limited’
Spatial incidence refers to patterns or occurrences on the ground, what has happened, where it happened, distinguishing trends and more importantly what is going to happen in the future. For example, employment levels may have risen over the region and reported widely with the belief that the whole region has benefited. However, upon closer examination, in fact, employment levels have increased only in an area of high population and not in fact in other areas. To a point, our indicator is mis-represented and it is only by undertaking a spatial analysis exercise, this is realised. In summary, in examining any indicator of growth, other questions in relation to where growth has occurred are equally important.
The designation of Derry/Londonderry and Letterkenny in the 2002 National Spatial Strategy and the Regional Development Strategy for Northern Ireland in 2001, as a crossborder linked gateway, will obviously have an impact on spatial patterns across a range of indictors well beyond the gateway itself.
It is with this in mind, that the SPACEial NW project aims to build up to a macro picture of the region, using GIS to determine the spatial incidences of urbanisation (what happened) over the period from 2000 to 2010, to locate the factors that are influencing such patterns (where it happened) and to determine what patterns are likely to exist in the future and what policies will be required to meet those emerging trends.
In summary, the urban rural growth analysis will take the spatial patterns of the past, learn from those patterns and predict what the region will look like in the future, be it urban morphology, the deprivation levels, rural fabric etc. The methodology we used is presented CHAPTER 3. To find out more about remote sensing , please go to the Remote Sensing Section.
 Rengasamy S, Regional Planning, Regional Growth Theories, 2008 p.7