Settlement in Southeast Asia

1 January 2017

An example of such a country is Singapore. There are also countries with some areas that are much more urbanized than other areas. The entire area is closely clustered with buildings. A good example of such a pattern can be seen from Bangkok in Thailand. Dominant settlement patterns of most major cities in the world with high population densities are likely to result in clustering of buildings due to constraints of land resources. Urban settlements tend to be clustered as people in urban settlements are mainly involved in activities like business and manufacturing.

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All these require transportation and services. Thus, having settlements clustered together enables them to have easy access to transportation. Population density here is usually higher than in rural settlements and the incomes of people in urban settlements are usually higher than those in rural settlements as well. 2. Linear Liner settlements can be found along main transport roads, railways, rivers or canals. Individual buildings are arranged in a linear pattern that takes after the structure of the transport road, making travelling easier for people living in the settlement.

Such examples can be found in Philippines, along its main roads and in Vietnam, along its canal. Rural settlements tend to be linear and located along a river as rural settlements are mainly involved in activities such farming, fishing, growing of crops, etc. Population density in this area is low, with few amenities such as schools, clinics, public transports and etc. The living of people in this settlement is usually closely related to the settlement’s main function and physical environment. 3. Dispersed

Dispersed settlements are created with individual buildings being scattered all over a wide area or large open spaces. Some examples are forests, farmlands, etc. This pattern happens usually due to limited natural resources or fertile soil, resulting in people being spread out to ensure enough land for agriculture functions and for obtaining resources from the ground. An example of where the dispersed pattern can be found is in Philippines. Dispersed settlement patterns are usually found in rural areas around the world due to small population sizes and low population densities in those areas.

Patterns of settlements are very closely linked to the physical landscape, climate, location of water and resources and access to trade routes of the area. Historically, people settled close to trade routes, by which it is usually water routes, in areas of hospitable climates and terrain. This general pattern remains true today. The only difference is that humans of today are more adapted to harsher climates and more rugged terrains and trade is no longer the factor controlling settlement patterns. There are various factors that affect the location of settlements in the Southeast Asian region.

However, the factor that plays the most important role is rivers. When Southeast Asia was first colonised by the Europeans, they set up trading ports beside rivers and seas. Thus, until today, extensive changes of dominated port cities have been established in countries such as Singapore. Sources also show that in both ancient and modern times, people have sought out all kinds of ways to settle alongside bodies of water, rivers in particular. They have historically been a draw to migrants in search of fresh water for drinking, cooking and food.

In addition to providing an abundance source of fish, lakes and streams have long been desirable places to hunt animals coming to drink from them. For many cultures of the world, rivers have also had a spiritual significance, drawing people to visit, pray, celebrate and settle along their banks. Rivers are important as they are the main paths for water transport. Transport is vital for trade and trade is vital for the wealth of a country. In some Southeast Asia regions, water transport is generally faster and cheaper than most ways of travel on land.

Water is also counted as a resource that is usually in good supplies and does not need any up keeping. An example of such a country is Vietnam. Vietnam is not as well-developed as some other countries and thus, water transport is still commonly used there. Rivers provide water for agriculture as well. Countries such as Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand do a lot of crop planting (wet agriculture), so they need plenty of water. Thus, settling along rivers allow them to be able to draw in water effortlessly as they have easy access to water.

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