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Theoretical Perspectives on Industry Clusters

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  • Gashawbeza Bekele

    ()
    (Department of History, Political Science, Geography and Africana Studies, Tennessee State University)

  • Randall Jackson

    ()
    (Regional Research Institute, West Virginia University)

Abstract

The concept of industry clustering has generated much discussion in regional economic development theory and practice in recent years. Yet it is fair to say that an accepted definition or a unified theoretical framework has failed to emerge from the discussion, as the concept often seems to enliven itself under divergent theoretical approaches, including but not limited to work on agglomeration economies, industrial districts, business networks, knowledge spillovers, and regional innovation systems. This paper provides a review of the major theoretical propositions that seek to explain the clustering of economic activity and its presumed link with regional economic development. While there is undoubtedly some overlap on some of the explanations offered by various theoretical perspectives, the concept of clustering has been used so widely in varying contexts and in a multifaceted manner that it risks creating more confusion than clarity, especially in empirical research.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Regional Research Institute, West Virginia University in its series Working Papers with number 200605.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:rri:wpaper:200605

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Keywords: industry clusters; agglomeration; industrial districts; regional innovation systems; knowledge spillovers; competitiveness;

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Cited by:
  1. Adelar Fochezatto & Iván G. Peyré Tartaruga, 2014. "Estruturaprodutiva Potencialmente Inovadora E Desenvolvimento Local: Estudo Docaso Dos Municípios Do Rio Grande Do Sul Usando Econometria Espacial," Anais do XL Encontro Nacional de Economia [Proceedings of the 40th Brazilian Economics Meeting] 161, ANPEC - Associação Nacional dos Centros de Pósgraduação em Economia [Brazilian Association of Graduate Programs in Economics].

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