Rio de Janeiro: Considerations on the Process of Urban Expansion and Internalization of Growth (1980-2010)

Abstract This article aims to analyze the process of urban expansion of the State of Rio de Janeiro that took place from the 1980s to the 2010s, trying to understand the meaning of internalization of population growth in the state. In this analysis, we place emphasis on internal migration, considering its key role in this process. In this sense, the study discusses the change in the role played by the State of Rio de Janeiro in the context of internal migrations in Brazil and the loss of importance of interstate migration as determinant of the expansion of urban areas and internalization of growth. In addition, this article demonstrates the increasing importance of intrastate migration to such processes. The key (consolidated) indicators of internal migration and the mean annual rates of population growth showed that since around the early 1980s, the municipalities along the northern coast of Rio de Janeiro - Coastal Lowlands and North of Rio de Janeiro - have been the ones with the greatest positive net migration, the largest TLM and the highest rates of population growth. These migration flows represent, therefore, the main front of internalization of the State. It is important to note that these migrations consist of as till timid process of internalization of growth, given the huge concentration of the population in the metropolitan area of Rio de Janeiro.