Collective Learning By Artisanal Subcontractors In A Philippine Furniture Cluster
This paper stresses the importance of subcontractors for the circulation of knowledge in industrial clusters. In studies on collective learning processes in clusters it often remains unclear who is involved and in which area a local knowledge base is built up. This study contributes to filling this gap by unravelling the learning process and focusing on how learning takes place at the level of artisanal subcontractors. Empirical evidence from two sub-sectors in the furniture cluster in Pampanga (the Philippines) is used to identify learning processes among subcontractors, indicating how knowledge is transferred along the value chain and diffused among them. The paper demonstrates that knowledge hardly trickles down from exporters, but that subcontractors are a major source of feedback to them. However, despite possessing the key strategic product knowledge, the subcontractors' absence of knowledge in other areas (i.e. technical, managerial and market knowledge) weakens their bargaining position in this cluster. Copyright (c) 2005 by the Royal Dutch Geographical Society KNAG.
Volume (Year): 96 (2005)
Issue (Month): 5 (December)
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