The adoption of new technology in West Virgnia implications for manufacturing modernization policies
In this paper the determinants of the adoption of new technology are explored by using data obtained from a 1993 survey of 299 manufacturing establishments in the state of West Virginia. The authors examine the use of twenty hardware-based and organizational new manufacturing technologies, aggregate use of technology, and plans for future use of technology. Multivariate regression analyses indicate that larger, export-oriented, branch plants that manufacture products in long production runs, and plants that are located in counties with a sizeable manufacturing sector adopt more new technologies than do other types of plants. The results also suggest that there is a role for further government policy in encouraging plant modernization. Although participation in a state technology-assistance program is not yet associated with higher aggregate levels of use of new technology, it is found to be associated with the adoption of specific technologies and receptivity to investment in new technology. The results of the study also confirm the value of training and suggest that a strategy of targeting smaller and medium-sized plants with services focused on multiple clustered locations may be effective in stimulating the use of new technology among these manufacturers.
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