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Turning around local economies: Managerial strategies and community assets

  • Peter B. Doeringer

    (Professor of Economics at Boston University and is Jacob Wertheim Fellow at the Center for Business and Government, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University)

  • David G. Terkla

    (Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of Massachusetts, Boston)

Nontraditional “invisible” sources of growth are identified through a case study of a diversified industrial region in Massachusetts. Firm-specific managerial strategies are found to be an important element in the determination of economic growth. Customized and hybrid firms characterize major departures from the product-cycle model in which product specialization and service specialization attached to traditional products allow them to avoid productcycle maturity. The interaction of these business strategies with invisible community factors such as labor force quality and the labor-management environment significantly influences local economic growth. These findings indicate the importance of targeting development efforts at the firm as opposed to the industry level and the need to better utilize local invisible factors as a basis for boosting local economic growth.

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Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Journal of Policy Analysis and Management.

Volume (Year): 9 (1990)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Pages: 487-506

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Handle: RePEc:wly:jpamgt:v:9:y:1990:i:4:p:487-506
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  1. Akerlof, George A, 1982. "Labor Contracts as Partial Gift Exchange," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 97(4), pages 543-69, November.
  2. Hekman, John S, 1980. "The Product Cycle and New England Textiles," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 94(4), pages 697-717, June.
  3. Norton, R D, 1986. "Industrial Policy and American Renewal," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 24(1), pages 1-40, March.
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