Analysis of the Causes and Circumstances of Tehran Centralization in the Past Three Decades

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Associate professor of geography, Faculty of Humanities, University of Guilan, Guilan, Iran

2 Assistant professor of geography and urban planning, Faculty of Geography, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran

3 MA in geography and urban planning, Faculty of Humanities, University of Guilan, Guilan, Iran


 There is no doubt that centralization of Tehran City is due to the several factors  originated from different reasons. The main reason for the concentration of affairsin Tehran is that from 1921 a centralized government model was formed in Iran. The main economic and political aim of the government was set to establish the security and making a market in order to integrate into a global market. To achieve these two goals, decision-making authority was focused and targeted decision was issued from the political center of the country. Initially, the amount of duties and public services were low, this systems work well, but their problems are gradually revealed. Focused approach is a large portion of government workers in Tehran and its outcome was political, administrative, and economic centralization and the emergence of an urban concentration. As Tehran is the place of everything, it can easily attract more private and public investments. Tehran emerged centralization is affected by several factors and these factors caused considerable gap between this city and other cities and regions of this country. Political and administrative concentration in Tehran led to recruitment of specialists. This makes the headquarters of all the institutions which control the whole or part of the social and economic affairs of the country to be placed in Tehran. The process of economic focus in Tehran is the process of fund accumulation. Concentration of more dominant forms of economic activities in Tehran was dependent upon the governmental and administrative success of this city relative to the rest of the country. This centralization has some side effects. On the one hand, these problems prevent other areas of the country from achieving the desired development and on the other hand cause major problems in Tehran. Solution of these problems depends greatly on the understanding of the predisposition and the reduction factors of the centralization. To this end, this paper seeks to answer this question that what factors direct Tehran to be centralized and how these factors turned it into a major part of the country.
The Research Methodology in view of functional aims and the way of conduction is descriptive - analytical. Thus, the library studies will be used to investigate the formation process of centralization in Iran, with the focus on Tehran and, then, by using discordant index of Morris to investigate none parallel and the space which created between different areas of country as a kind of centralization output. The regions of the country were ranked in terms of development indicators to determine Tehran's position in the country. Finally, statistical yearbook was utilized to understand the centralization and the data were statistically analyzed to determine how Tehran is in this situation.
Results and discussion 
The results of this study show that the main factors that led to Tehran centralization are political, economic, infrastructural reasons, population and workforce. These main factors have made considerable gap between Tehran and other parts of the country. The major cause of centralization is political and administrative focus in Tehran. At the beginning of the century, Tehran was only the political capital but it also became the economic capital quickly. In many countries, particularly those countries whose economy is largely dependent upon the resources possessed by the government, focus and centralization of economic activities and infrastructure has happened in the headquarters of the government, i.e. political capital. This phenomenon has not only increased population in capital but also caused establishment of a wide range of social and cultural activities in it, which fed mainly by governmental budgets.
Tehran has been centralized for about a century ago. During this period, Iran is focused in Tehran in almost all aspects. This centralization began with political reasons and resulted in all-encompassing focus. The focus was continued in such a way that leaded to more inequality and spatial and sectoral polarization. Tehran also encountered with some problems need to be resolved. To reduce centralization of Tehran and eliminate inequality from which other parts of the country are suffering, it depends on the decentralization of political – administrative power and government decision-making of local and provincial (regional) development management. With the aid of the main way to deal with decentralization (i.e. transfer of the power not just the devolution of it) and following the approach to the reform in the governance structure, Tehran centralization would be decreased and hence this provide the balanced and harmonious development of the country.


Main Subjects

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