Suburbanisation of the Rural Areas and the Implementation of Local Authorities' Own Responsibilities: Needs and Challenges
Purpose: The purpose of the study is to analyse population trends in the rural areas surrounding large cities and to identify the resulting new needs and challenges for the implementation of the own tasks of the authorities of these administrative units. Design/Methodology/Approach: The study was carried out using statistical data made available by the Statistics Poland (SP), which enabled the study of value increments and the observation of trends, including changes in environmental infrastructure. Findings: Rapid population growth and rejuvenation of the population living in rural peri-urban areas were observed. The dynamic population growth has created needs that must be met immediately by local authorities. Such needs include the fast implementation of investments related to the obligation to provide an adequate number of school and kindergarten places for the growing number of children, as well as environmental protection, e.g. through the collection and disposal of waste produced by the growing number of households. Practical Implications: The results of the study seem to be of a significant practical importance - local authorities need to analyse current demographic trends, forecast future population levels and plan resources for investment to carry out their own responsibilities in response to changing community needs. Originality/Value: The article introduces an element of novelty, as most studies describing the course and effects of suburbanisation omit the issue of changing the age structure of the population and its direct implications for local authorities.