Location and Technological Change in the American Glass Industry During the Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries
AbstractScholars have attempted to explain geographic clustering in inventive activity by arguing that it is connected with clustering in production or new investment. They have offered three possible reasons for this link: because invention occurs as a result of learning by doing; because new investment encourages experimentation with novel techniques; and because there are local information flows that make inventors more fertile in areas where producers are concentrated. In this article we test these theories by studying geographic patterns of production and invention in the glass industry during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. We find that the patterns deviate significantly from what the theories would predict, and offer the alternative hypothesis that inventive activity proceeded most intensively in areas where markets for technology had developed most fully that is, where there were localized networks of institutions that mobilized information about technological opportunities and mediated relations among inventors, suppliers of capital, and those who would commercially develop or exploit new technologies.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 5938.
Date of creation: Feb 1997
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
Find related papers by JEL classification:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Kenneth L. Sokoloff, 1988.
"Inventive Activity in Early Industrial America: Evidence From Patent Records, 1790 - 1846,"
NBER Working Papers
2707, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Sokoloff, Kenneth L., 1988. "Inventive Activity in Early Industrial America: Evidence From Patent Records, 1790–1846," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 48(04), pages 813-850, December.
- Kenneth L. Sokoloff, 1988. "Inventive Activity in Early Industrial America: Evidence From Patent Records, 1790-1846," UCLA Economics Working Papers 499, UCLA Department of Economics.
- Young, Alwyn, 1991. "Learning by Doing and the Dynamic Effects of International Trade," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(2), pages 369-405, May.
- Alwyn Young, 1991. "Learning by Doing and the Dynamic Effects of International Trade," NBER Working Papers 3577, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Beaudry, Catherine & Allaoui, Sedki, 2012. "Impact of public and private research funding on scientific production: The case of nanotechnology," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(9), pages 1589-1606.
- Pattit, Jason M. & Raj, S.P. & Wilemon, David, 2012. "An institutional theory investigation of U.S. technology development trends since the mid-19th century," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 306-318.
- Alessandro Nuvolari, 2004.
"Collective invention during the British Industrial Revolution: the case of the Cornish pumping engine,"
Cambridge Journal of Economics,
Oxford University Press, vol. 28(3), pages 347-363, May.
- Alessandro Nuvolari, 2001. "Collective Invention during the British Industrial Revolution The Case of the Cornish Pumping Engine," DRUID Working Papers 01-05, DRUID, Copenhagen Business School, Department of Industrial Economics and Strategy/Aalborg University, Department of Business Studies.
- Nuvolari, A., 2004. "Collective invention during the British Industrial Revolution: the case of the Cornish pumping engine," Eindhoven Center for Innovation Studies (ECIS) working paper series 04.02, Eindhoven Center for Innovation Studies (ECIS).
- Nuvolari, A., 2001. "Collective Invention during the British Industrial Revolution: The Case of the Cornish Pumping Engine," Eindhoven Center for Innovation Studies (ECIS) working paper series 01.04, Eindhoven Center for Innovation Studies (ECIS).
- Catherine Beaudry & Stefano Breschi, 2000. "Does 'Clustering' really help firms'innovative activities?," KITeS Working Papers 111, KITeS, Centre for Knowledge, Internationalization and Technology Studies, Universita' Bocconi, Milano, Italy, revised Jul 2000.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.