Rural population mobility, deforestation, and urbanization: case of Turkey

  • Hasan Emre Ünal
  • Üstüner BirbenEmail author
  • Ferhat Bolat


The benefits of the forests are well known and are by their existence alone an amenity. Nonetheless, urbanization as one of the most remarkable features of social development has immense effects on forest resources and land use. In this study, it is hypothesized that there are temporal interactions among the rural population dynamics, urbanization, and forest resources. Data set is based on rural population, total population, and forest areas for the period of 1990–2017. Regression analysis (the ordinary least square, OLS) and dummy variable in regression were used by taking the years into consideration. The coefficient of total population in the regression model developed in our study was positive, which means with the increasing total population, there is an increase in forest areas as well, contrary to common opinion in the literature. With this study, a positive/linear temporal relation between the forest area and urbanization via the regression statistics was determined. There is a significant inverse relation between rural population decline and forest area increase too. Our results provide also a compelling evidence that rural population mobility, afforestation, and forestry policy have strong effects and play an important role over the forest management and forest policy in Turkey.


Rural population dynamics Urbanization Forest policy Afforestation Dummy variables 



The authors are grateful to Dr. Sabit Erşahin for his suggestions and two anonymous reviewers for the valuable comments.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Forest Engineering, Faculty of ForestryÇankırı Karatekin UniversityÇankırıTurkey

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