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Contemporary population and development challenges in the Municipality of Dubrovačko Primorje, Croatia

Author(s): Helena Karlić Mujo

Journal: Geoadria
ISSN 1331-2294

Volume: 15;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 109;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: Municipality of Dubrovačko Primorje | depopulation | deagrarisation | deruralisation | demographic aging

The purpose of this paper is to define the basic issues and opportunities challenging the modern development of the Municipality of Dubrovačko Primorje, their causes and effects. The processes of depopulation affected this poorly developed rural region since 1960s, which had been influenced by various factors: development polarisation caused by intensive development of tourism, the poor traffic infrastructure in the highland-area of the Municipality and the unsolved water supply issue. In 1990s a series of events intensified negative demographic trends as follows: aggression on Croatia, occupation during which residential, economic and infrastructural buildings were destroyed and burnt, as well as an earthquake which happened after the return of the refugees. The long-lasting rural emigration from this region towards Dubrovnik caused not only an instantaneous decrease of population but also a contraction of the renewing basis and an accelerated decrease of natural growth in the Municipality of Dubrovačko Primorje. In that way the emigrational depopulation as a consequence of a specific socioeconomic development, became the cause of the current biological depopulation. The intensity of the depopulation processes has been established by an analysis of a total population dynamics and the changes in biological and economic population structure. The conclusion of the study indicates activities which have promising development in the Municipality of Dubrovačko Primorje and which might partly stop the negative demographic trends. Those are mainly traditional activities in this region which are not commercially used enough. They should prevent any further emigration and perhaps even attract those who immigrated, back to their place of birth.

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