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The Global Assembly-Operations of US Semiconductor Firms: A Geographical Analysis


  • A J Scott

    (Department of Geography, University of California—Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California 90024, USA)

  • D P Angel

    (Graduate School of Geography, Clark University, Worcester, MA 01610, USA)


The paper begins with a brief description of assembly processes in the semiconductor industry. The organizational structure and geography of the assembly operations of US semiconductor firms are then considered. Two issues in particular are examined, namely (a) the conditions under which vertical integration and disintegration of assembly tend to occur, and (b) the reasons why most semiconductor assembly is performed offshore. Lengthy empirical descriptions are offered of the assembly activities of US semiconductor firms in (a) the United States, (b) Western Europe, and (c) the world periphery and semiperiphery (above all, East and Southeast Asia). The paper concludes with a short critical comment on the theory of the new international division of labor.

Suggested Citation

  • A J Scott & D P Angel, 1988. "The Global Assembly-Operations of US Semiconductor Firms: A Geographical Analysis," Environment and Planning A, , vol. 20(8), pages 1047-1067, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:envira:v:20:y:1988:i:8:p:1047-1067
    DOI: 10.1068/a201047

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ernst, Dieter, 1985. "Automation and the worldwide restructuring of the electronics industry: Strategic implications for developing countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 333-352, March.
    2. Peter J. Buckley & Mark Casson, 1985. "The Economic Theory of the Multinational Enterprise," Palgrave Macmillan Books, Palgrave Macmillan, number 978-1-349-05242-4, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Elitsa R. Banalieva & Ravi Sarathy, 2011. "A Contingency Theory of Internationalization," Management International Review, Springer, vol. 51(5), pages 593-634, October.
    2. Campbell, Duncan C. & Mcelrath RG., 1990. "The Employment effects of multinational enterprises in the United States and of American multinationals abroad," ILO Working Papers 992895713402676, International Labour Organization.
    3. repec:ilo:ilowps:289571 is not listed on IDEAS

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