There is no concrete theoretical consideration for regional delimitation. Richardson has classes the existing method of delineating a region into three broad categories namely homogeneous modality and programming.
A region is an area that has common characteristics that distinguish it from neighboring areas. In other words, a region is a perceived segment of space differentiated from other regions on the basis of one or more defining characteristics. Since the defining characteristics are of various types so are the regions.
Types of Region
According to the Richardson basic types of the regions are
- Homogenous Region
- Nodal Region
- Ad-hoc / Programming Region
A homogenous region is a geographical area where the characteristics of the population or the physical environment are relatively uniform and consistent throughout the region. This uniformity can be based on various factors such as climate, culture, economy, demographics, etc. For example, a homogenous region in terms of culture might have a similar language, religion, and way of life for most of its inhabitants.
In such regions, the differences between one place and another are minimal, and there is a high degree of consistency in the physical, cultural, or economic features. This makes homogenous regions distinct from heterogeneous regions, which have a more diverse mix of characteristics and a greater range of differences within the region.
As homogenous entity region in respect to certain factor, e.g. dominant industry, specialized function, per capita income level, employment level, language etc. According to the Meyer, homogeneity in case of homogenous region is with reference to someone or combination of physical, economical, social or other characteristics. Homogeneity is not a matter of accidents but it results from certain geographical facts, e.g. location, geology structure, mineral resources, geomorphology, climate, drainage, soil, vegetation, land use of agriculture, industry, trade, communication, population, language, culture and politics.
Homogenous region can be delineated in number of ways, depending upon how many factors are adopted for classification. Thus in delineating economic region we can consider single factor as like per capita income, or we can consider more than two factors such as region in respect to certain factor, e.g. dominant industry, specialized function, per capita income, region in respect to certain factor, e.g. dominant industry, specialized function, per capita consumption region in respect to certain factor, e.g. dominant industry, specialized function, per capita savings etc.
Soil region, climate region, natural region and economic regions are homogenous regions. There is an uniformity in respect of certain factors, e.g. soil regions emphasizes uniformity in respect of physical and chemical compositions of soil structure, mineral ingredients, vegetation contents, color, moisture etc.
A nodal region is a type of economic region characterized by a concentration of economic activity around a specific center or node. The node can be a city, town, or any other location that serves as a hub for economic activity, such as transportation, trade, and commerce. Nodal regions typically have a well-developed transportation infrastructure, making it easy to move goods, people, and information.
Examples of nodal regions include metropolitan areas and city-regions, where a central city serves as the main node of economic activity and is surrounded by a number of smaller towns and suburbs. The central city often has a diverse and specialized economy, with a mix of manufacturing, service, and retail sectors, while the surrounding areas typically have more specialized or complementary economic activities.
The concept of nodal regions is important in the study of economic geography, as it helps to understand the distribution of economic activity and the relationship between different regions.
Nodal region has one or more cities or dominant nodes. Nodality or polarization is usually around some central urban place. A nodal region is homogenous in that it combines areas dependent in some trade or functional sense or specific center. Nodality is mainly emphasizes interdependence.
Nodality gives a functional region. Functional region or polarized regions emphasizes interdependence or linkages and are created by the two way movement and relationship which have grown up between an urban pole or attraction and its sphere of influence. Its sphere of influence usually spreads over heterogeneous units such as cities, towns, villages. These heterogeneous units are however functionally interrelated.
Nodal region can also be delimited in number of ways depending upon the factors of classification. They are as intra-regional commodity flow, commuting pattern, and migration flow, telephone and communication network density and news paper circulation areas. Thus an area developed so that way by centrally located social services.
Ad-hoc / Programming Region
Ad-hoc regions, programming regions, and planning regions are all terms used in regional planning and management, which involves the organization and coordination of resources and activities across different geographical areas.
Ad-hoc regions refer to regions that are created for specific, short-term purposes, such as disaster response or emergency management. These regions are usually created in response to immediate needs and are disbanded once the situation has stabilized.
Programming regions refer to regions that are created for specific, long-term purposes, such as regional economic development or environmental protection. These regions are established with a clear purpose and are designed to achieve specific goals over an extended period of time.
Planning regions refer to regions that are created for the purpose of planning and decision-making, often in the context of regional governance and public policy. Planning regions are usually established to provide a framework for coordinating resources and activities across multiple areas, and they help to ensure that policies and plans are developed and implemented in a comprehensive and integrated manner.
These different types of regions are used in different ways and for different purposes, depending on the context and the goals of regional planning and management.
Programming regions are policy oriented and concerned mainly with administrative coherence. Planning regions e as she Confirms to the administrative boundaries. They have advantage of offering a framework for planning activities. The administrative frontiers are arbitrary and do not often confirm to homogeneity and nodality. Political realities and availability of data nevertheless make them a practical necessity in demarcating regions.
A planning region should have an economic existence, social and cultural cohesiveness and essentially operational in character. The economic viability * requires it to be large enough to enable substantial changes in the distribution of population and employment to take place within its boundaries, where as the operationally requires it smalf enough for its problems to viewed as a whole.