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Industry and the Urge to Cluster: A Study of the Informal Sector in India

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  • Megha Mukim

Abstract

This paper studies the determinants of firm location choice at the district-level in India to gauge the relative importance of agglomeration economies vis-à-vis good business environment. A peculiar characteristic of the Indian economy is that the unorganised nonfarm sector accounts for 43.2% of NDP and employs 71.6% of the total workforce. I analyse National Sample Survey data that covers over 4.4 million firms, in both unorganised sectors - manufacturing and services. The empirical analysis is carried out using count models, and I instrument with land revenue institutions to deal with possible endogeneity bias. I find that buyer-suppler linkages and industrial diversity make a district more attractive to economic activity, whilst the quality and level of infrastructure are also important. I conclude that public policy may be limited in its ability to encourage relocation of informal firms.

Suggested Citation

  • Megha Mukim, 2011. "Industry and the Urge to Cluster: A Study of the Informal Sector in India," SERC Discussion Papers 0072, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.
  • Handle: RePEc:cep:sercdp:0072
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    Cited by:

    1. Ghani, Ejaz & Kerr, William R. & O'Connell, Stephen D., 2014. "Political reservations and women's entrepreneurship in India," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 138-153.
    2. repec:eee:jeborg:v:137:y:2017:i:c:p:90-104 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Ghani, Ejaz & Kanbur, Ravi & O'Connell, Stephen D., 2013. "Urbanization and agglomeration benefits : gender differentiated impacts on enterprise creation in India's informal sector," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6553, The World Bank.
    4. Ghani, Ejaz & Goswami, Arti Grover & Kerr, William R., 2012. "Is India's manufacturing sector moving away from cities ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6271, The World Bank.
    5. Aaron Chatterji & Edward Glaeser & William Kerr, 2014. "Clusters of Entrepreneurship and Innovation," Innovation Policy and the Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 14(1), pages 129-166.
    6. Ana Isabel Moreno-Monroy & Gustavo Adolfo García Cruz, 2016. "Intra-Metropolitan Agglomeration of Formal and Informal Manufacturing Activity: Evidence from Cali, Colombia," Tijdschrift voor Economische en Sociale Geografie, Royal Dutch Geographical Society KNAG, vol. 107(4), pages 389-406, September.
    7. Ghani, Ejaz & O'Connell, Stephen D. & Sharma, Gunjan, 2013. "Friend or foe or family ? a tale of formal and informal plants in India," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6588, The World Bank.
    8. Colin C Williams & Abbi M. Kedir, 2016. "Business Registration And Firm Performance: Some Lessons From India," Journal of Developmental Entrepreneurship (JDE), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 21(03), pages 1-19, September.
    9. Ejaz Ghani & William R. Kerr & Stephen O'Connell, 2014. "Spatial Determinants of Entrepreneurship in India," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 48(6), pages 1071-1089, June.
    10. Megha Mukim, 2015. "Coagglomeration of formal and informal industry: evidence from India," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(2), pages 329-351.
    11. Ghani, Ejaz & Kerr, William R. & O'Connell, Stephen D., 2013. "The exceptional persistence of India's unorganized sector," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6454, The World Bank.
    12. Ana Moreno-Monroy & Janneke Pieters & Abdul Erumban, 2014. "Formal sector subcontracting and informal sector employment in Indian manufacturing," IZA Journal of Labor & Development, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 3(1), pages 1-17, December.
    13. Ghani, Ejaz & Kerr, William R. & O'Connell, Stephen D., 2013. "Female business ownership and informal sector persistence," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6612, The World Bank.
    14. Ana M. Fernandes & Gunjan Sharma, 2014. "Determinants of Clusters in Indian Manufacturing: The Role of Infrastructure, Governance, Education, and Industrial Policy," Working Papers id:5693, eSocialSciences.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Agglomeration economies; informal sector; location choice;

    JEL classification:

    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)
    • R3 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location
    • O17 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Formal and Informal Sectors; Shadow Economy; Institutional Arrangements

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