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Industrial development policies and performances in Southern China: Beyond the specialised industrial cluster program

Author

Listed:
  • Barbieri, Elisa
  • Di Tommaso, Marco R.
  • Bonnini, Stefano

Abstract

The paper offers an updated picture of the policies implemented by the government of the Guangdong Province (China) to foster the industrial development and the technological upgrading of its territories. Among these policies is the promotion and the institutional acknowledgement of a growing number of industrial clusters, defined as “Specialised Towns”, characterized by a high spatial concentration of firms producing one specific item (or a limited range of similar products). In the view of the provincial and local governments these types of industrial development programs are used to increase firm agglomerations, spatial concentration and visibility, which in turn leads to increased specialisation, industrial output, innovation and economic growth. However, little specific empirical evidence has been collected to support this view and the debate, at the national and international level, on the effectiveness of such interventions seems to be still largely ideological. The paper offers a contribution in this sense by offering a detailed description of the policy tools, by suggesting synthetic indexes to quantify policy efforts and industrial performances in Guangdong territories and by providing a first statistical analysis of these indexes.

Suggested Citation

  • Barbieri, Elisa & Di Tommaso, Marco R. & Bonnini, Stefano, 2012. "Industrial development policies and performances in Southern China: Beyond the specialised industrial cluster program," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 613-625.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:chieco:v:23:y:2012:i:3:p:613-625
    DOI: 10.1016/j.chieco.2010.12.005
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Elisa Barbieri & Marco Di Tommaso & Lauretta Rubini, 2009. "Industrial development policies in southern China: the specialised towns programme," ECONOMIA E POLITICA INDUSTRIALE, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 36(3), pages 179-198.
    2. Demurger, Sylvie & Sachs, Jeffrey D. & Woo, Wing Thye & BAO, Shuming & Chang, Gene, 2002. "The relative contributions of location and preferential policies in China's regional development: being in the right place and having the right incentives," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 444-465, December.
    3. Ge, Wei, 1999. "Special Economic Zones and the Opening of the Chinese Economy: Some Lessons for Economic Liberalization," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 27(7), pages 1267-1285, July.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Canfei He & Rudai Yang, 2016. "Determinants of Firm Failure: Empirical Evidence from China," Growth and Change, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(1), pages 72-92, March.
    2. Zheng, Liang & Zhao, Zhong, 2017. "What drives spatial clusters of entrepreneurship in China? Evidence from economic census data," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 46(C), pages 229-248.
    3. Marco R. Di Tommaso & Elisa Barbieri & Lauretta Rubini, 2012. "The Cantonese model: Clusters of firms and local industrial development policy in Southern China," Working Papers 1212, c.MET-05 - Centro Interuniversitario di Economia Applicata alle Politiche per L'industria, lo Sviluppo locale e l'Internazionalizzazione.
    4. Marco Marozzi, 2016. "Construction, Robustness Assessment and Application of an Index of Perceived Level of Socio-Economic Threat from Immigrants: A Study of 47 European Countries and Regions," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 128(1), pages 413-437, August.
    5. Breitschopf, Barbara, 2015. "Policy mix and the impact on PV technologies and industry: The challenge - how to make policies quantifiable?," Working Papers "Sustainability and Innovation" S6/2015, Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (ISI).
    6. Bao, Chengchao & Chen, Zhao & Wu, Jianfeng, 2013. "Chinese manufacturing on the move: Factor supply or market access?," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 26(C), pages 170-181.
    7. Zheng, Guo & Barbieri, Elisa & Di Tommaso, Marco R. & Zhang, Lei, 2016. "Development zones and local economic growth: zooming in on the Chinese case," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 238-249.
    8. Florian BUTOLLO, 2013. "Moving Beyond Cheap Labour? Industrial and Social Upgrading in the Garment and LED Industries of the Pearl River Delta," Journal of Current Chinese Affairs - China aktuell, Institute of Asian Studies, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies, Hamburg, vol. 42(4), pages 139-170.
    9. Karla Paola Jiménez Almaguer. & José Melchor Medina Quintero. & Nazlhe Faride Cheín Schekaibán, 2013. "The search for the development of clusters in Tamaulipas, Mexico: A case study," Economía: teoría y práctica, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana, México, vol. 39(2), pages 89-117, Julio-Dic.
    10. Canfei He & Qi Guo & David Rigby, 2015. "Industry Relatedness, Agglomeration Externalities and Firm Survival in China," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 1528, Utrecht University, Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning, Group Economic Geography, revised Sep 2015.
    11. repec:spr:anresc:v:58:y:2017:i:2:d:10.1007_s00168-016-0778-1 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Marco Marozzi & Mario Bolzan, 2016. "Skills and training requirements of municipal directors: a statistical assessment," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 50(3), pages 1093-1115, May.
    13. Canfei He & Yan Yan & David Rigby, 2015. "Regional Industrial Evolution in China: Path Dependence or Path Creation?," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 1520, Utrecht University, Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning, Group Economic Geography, revised Jul 2015.
    14. repec:eee:chieco:v:44:y:2017:i:c:p:154-165 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Ha-Joon Chang & Antonio Andreoni & Ming Leong Kuan, 2013. "International Industrial Policy Experiences & the Lessons for the UK," Working Papers wp450, Centre for Business Research, University of Cambridge.
    16. Marco R. Di Tommaso & Elisa Barbieri & Manli Huang, 2012. "Innovation in Chinese cluster-based leading enterprises," Working Papers 1213, c.MET-05 - Centro Interuniversitario di Economia Applicata alle Politiche per L'industria, lo Sviluppo locale e l'Internazionalizzazione.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Industrial development policies; Industrial clusters; Policy evaluation; Innovation; Industrial performance; Guangdong; China;

    JEL classification:

    • O25 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - Industrial Policy
    • O38 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Government Policy

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