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Global values chains and networks in dialogue with consumption and social movements


  • John Wilkinson


In this paper we explore the strengths and limitations of Global Value Chain (GVC) analysis and the concomitant merits of transaction cost and convention theory frames of references. We first situate GVC analysis against the background of an earlier filiere approach in the Latin American context explaining the demise of this latter and the subsequent rise of chain-based research in the very different conditions of deregulation and globalisation. It is argued that transaction cost and convention contributions are eminently complementary when focusing on the mechanics of economic coordination within particular supply systems. When broader conflicting value systems are in question, however, convention analysis is more able to account for the dynamic of collective action and the network rather than chain configuration this assumes. The transition of the informal economy to artisan niche market status and the current centrality of consumption are discussed as two phenomena illustrating the relative strengths of a convention-based analysis.

Suggested Citation

  • John Wilkinson, 2008. "Global values chains and networks in dialogue with consumption and social movements," International Journal of Technological Learning, Innovation and Development, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 1(4), pages 536-550.
  • Handle: RePEc:ids:ijtlid:v:1:y:2008:i:4:p:536-550

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