Several measures of structural differentiation for various institutionalized areas of county development are compared. Evidence regarding the hypotheses that differentiation is a system-wide, unidimensional phenomenon and that it is related to population are investigated. Scalable dimensions are found to exist among county administrative characteristics, medical special ties, commercial services, and educational institutions. Guttman scales formed from the complexity of such development are often used along with population size as operational measures of locality differentiation. The four scales and population size are analyzed together using the Guttman-Lingoes Multiple Scalogram Analysis for three different points in time. It is concluded that the alternative measures of differentiation cannot be used interchangeably as equal or nearly equal measures of the concept. Population size and the differentiation of comnercial services, however, are close parallels. Their reliability as correlates of differentiation is consistent for three different points in time as indicated by the Guttman-Lingoes Multiple Scalogram Analysis. Theoretical implications are that differentiation cannot be viewed as a single phenomenon. Future research should consider separately different levels of development and rates of change depending on the type of differentiation considered. This will make the task for explanatory theory more complicated than it would have been had all measures of structural complexity proven to be tautologically related.
Tomazic, Terry, and Robert Moxley. 1987. "Is Structural Differentiation in Localities a Single or Multidimensional Phenomenon? Alternative Measures and Relation to Population." Journal of Rural Social Sciences, 05(1): Article 4. Available at: https://egrove.olemiss.edu/jrss/vol05/iss1/4