IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

“Better living through chemistry”: the chemical industry in the world economy


  • Ilgen, Thomas L.


The chemical industry has produced a pattern of economic development and political change differing from that identified by research on the textile, steel, and automobile sectors. Its capacity for innovation and self-renewal renders inappropriate much of the logic of sectoral decline derived from theories of the product cycle. The postwar record of state-industry relations in France, Britain, West Germany, and the United States suggests that "strong" states can be helpful in bolstering the performance of the chemical industry in an expanding global economy but such states often frustrate the process of adaptation and adjustment during periods of recession. "Weak" states are particularly well suited to strong performance by the industry in both the good times and the bad.

Suggested Citation

  • Ilgen, Thomas L., 1983. "“Better living through chemistry”: the chemical industry in the world economy," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 37(04), pages 647-680, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:intorg:v:37:y:1983:i:04:p:647-680_03

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: link to article abstract page
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cup:intorg:v:37:y:1983:i:04:p:647-680_03. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Keith Waters). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.