Cities of the Modern-day Seem To Mimic Ancient ones.
A group of researchers from the Santa Fe Institute and the University of Colorado Boulder sought to find out whether ancient colonies and settlements functioned in similar ways to modern-day cities.
Scott Ortman from the Department of Anthropology at the University of Colorado Boulder and colleagues looked at data surveys from ancient settlements, houses and temples in the pre-Hispanic Basin of Mexico.
Then they analyzed structural dimensions to estimate the household productivity, how quickly monuments were constructed as well as the ancient settlements’ populations and densities. The researchers found that more populous ancient settlements also tended to be the more productive ones. They also found that rate at which this productivity increased was the same as in today’s city environment.
“We’ve been raised on a steady diet telling us that, thanks to capitalism, industrialization, and democracy, the modern world is radically different from worlds of the past. What we found here is that the fundamental drivers of robust socioeconomic patterns in modern cities precede all that.”
As populations in ancient cities grew, the rate at which they could produce monuments also increased, according to the researchers. They found that the pattern was true of private wealth accumulation. The surface areas of houses tend to become larger as the size of the settlement grew.
Interestingly, house area distribution was comparable to the distribution of income phenomena – which is observed in modern-day cities. Ortman and colleagues said that the findings showed that some of the most patterns observed in modern urban system were derived from processes that have long been part of human societies, writes Tech Times.
“Our results suggest the fundamental processes behind the emergence of scaling in modern cities have structured human settlement organization throughout human history, and that contemporary urban systems are best-conceived as lying on a continuum with the smaller-scale settlement systems known from historical and archaeological research,” the researchers wrote.
The study was published in the journal PLOS ONE.
Ancient Colonies Used Similar Development Skills As Modern Cities.