Suburban Municipalities on Trial – Analysing the Sustainability of Socioeconomic Structures at the Example of the Municipality Schkopau
This article analyses socio-economic criteria of municipalities next to large cities. In a case study, we examine the municipality Schkopau in the south of Saxony-Anhalt. We ask if the fusion of smaller communes to this “new” municipality created in 2004 was rational in terms of sustainable socio-economic structures. Hence, we use the criteria of satellite towns developed by Boustedt. We show that the criterion of political independence is assured by law. Meanwhile, the criteria independence of culture and urban development are not completely fulfilled. Due to the high density of industrial enterprises, the municipality has high tax revenue and therefore a strong financial basis. Also, the criterion of the minimum population figure is implemented. Based on the specific results of the satellite town criteria, we could not find definite results for the municipality Schkopau, they are rather ambivalent. This result is partly caused by the strong interactions within the functional area of the provinces Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt and Thuringia. Due to the high dynamic of the structural change, we also point out the necessity to enhance the criteria for sustainable socio-economic structures of local and regional municipalities.