A micro genetic algorithm with variable population size (VPμGA) is proposed for the spatial analysis for the functional region of suburan-rural area, in which, the fitness function is implied by a functional region affecting index (Θ) with a 'law-of-gravity' interpretation. The VPμGA evaluates the Θ represented dynamical behaviours over a 'short' to 'long' term period, which also revisits the urbanisation of Beijing and examines the Θ sensitivity to the functional distance of 13 suburban-rural districts. Numerical results with given statistics has been obtained using a specially devised simulation toolkit, it is shown that the VPμGA method can work valuably as a tool for providing a functional distanced based estimation of the inter-relationships between the enterprises number, the regional profit, the local population, the regional employment, etc.; and to use this understanding to evaluate suburban-rural districts that are more resilient and adaptable. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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