IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Empresas y distritos industriales en el mercado mundial: una aproximación desde la historia económica


  • Jordi Catalan

    () (Universitat de Barcelona)

  • José Antonio Miranda

    () (Universidad de Alicante)

  • Ramón Ramón-Muñoz

    () (Universitat de Barcelona)


This paper deals with the contribution of industrial districts and clusters to the creation of competitive advantage in industry. It is divided into two well-differentiated parts. The first one provides an interpretative summary of key issues in the analysis of the geographic concentration of industry. In particular, some of the main interpretations and debates on the causes and characteristics of this concentration are presented. Additionally, it pays particular attention to the ongoing debate about the role of external economies (i.e. the externalities of industrial concentration) and internal economies (i.e. the strategies and capabilities of medium-large firms) in the competitiveness of districts and clusters. The second part of the paper reviews some recent studies, mostly focused on nineteenth- and twentieth-century Spain. This review, which includes historical analyses of districts, clusters and industries with export capacity, is undertaken in the light of the discussion in the first part of this study. An interesting conclusion that emerges from the studies reviewed is that in Southern Europe the competitive advantage of the geographically concentrated industry appears to have been associated more with hub-firm clusters than with neo-Marshallian districts (Main text in Spanish)

Suggested Citation

  • Jordi Catalan & José Antonio Miranda & Ramón Ramón-Muñoz, 2011. "Empresas y distritos industriales en el mercado mundial: una aproximación desde la historia económica," Documentos de Trabajo (DT-AEHE) 1103, Asociacion Espa–ola de Historia Economica.
  • Handle: RePEc:ahe:dtaehe:1103

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Josean Garrués Irurzun & Juan Antonio Rubio Mondéjar, 2011. "Redes empresariales e integración económica regional en perspectiva histórica: el caso de Andalucía," FEG Working Paper Series 04/11, Faculty of Economics and Business (University of Granada).
    2. Montserrat Llonch-Casanovas, 2012. "Trademarks, product differentiation and competitiveness in the Catalan knitwear districts during the twentieth century," Business History, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 54(2), pages 179-200, June.

    More about this item


    industrial districts; clusters; competitive advantage; externalities; leading firms; economic history; industrial economics.;

    JEL classification:

    • L25 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Performance
    • N00 - Economic History - - General - - - General
    • O14 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Industrialization; Manufacturing and Service Industries; Choice of Technology
    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ahe:dtaehe:1103. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Estrella Trincado Aznar). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.