Geographia Polonica (1983) vol. 47

The settlement systems of virgin lands

James W. Simmons

Geographia Polonica (1983) vol. 47, pp. 51-66 | Full text

The settlement process is enormously complex. A very broad approach to the topic, extending across all the continents through the recorded past, would embrace all of human geography. Even a limited empirical comparison of settlement systems would require several volumes. The discussion to follow is simply a series of hypotheses, drawn from the geographic literature, about the recent development of settlement systems in previ-ously unsettled (virgin) territories. It is arranged into five sections: the definitions which constrain the discussion, the motives for settlement, the spatial imprint of development within the virgin lands, the impact on the source region, and some of the future trends and issues.

James W. Simmons, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada