Internal migration and population development in Iceland

Magnússon, Gylfi (2013) Internal migration and population development in Iceland. Fraser of Allander Economic Commentary, Special E (4). pp. 18-22. ISSN 2046-5378

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    Abstract

    Iceland’s settlement pattern has gone through at least four distinct phases. The first phase was when initial settlers came in the ninth and tenth century. They were farmers and the initial settlement pattern reflected the suitability of the Icelandic countryside for farming. Small farms were set up where the land was suitable for the animals to graze that the settlers introduced to the country, in particular sheep, cows and horses. Such farmland was found in the areas near the Icelandic coast, with the highland in the interior of the country being too cold for farming and having little or no vegetation.