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Firm Entry and Institutional Lock-in: An Organizational Ecology Analysis of the Global Fashion Design Industry

  • Rik Wenting

    ()

  • Koen Frenken

    ()

Few industries are more concentrated than the global fashion industry. We analyse the geography and evolution of the ready-to-wear fashion design industry by looking at the yearly entry rates following an organizational ecology approach. In contrast to earlier studies on manufacturing industries, we find that legitimation effects are local and competition effects are global. This result points to the rapid turnover of ideas in fashion on the one hand and the global demand for fashion apparel on the other hand. We attribute the decline of Paris in the post-war period to 'institutional lock-in', which prevented a ready-to-wear cluster to emerge as vested interested of haute couture designers were threatened. An extended organizational ecology model provides empirical support for this claim.

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Paper provided by Utrecht University, Section of Economic Geography in its series Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) with number 0801.

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Length: 22 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2008
Date of revision: Jan 2008
Handle: RePEc:egu:wpaper:0801
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  1. Robert Hassink, 2005. "How to unlock regional economies from path dependency? From learning region to learning cluster," European Planning Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(4), pages 521-535, June.
  2. Geroski, Paul A, 2000. "Exploring the Niche Overlaps Between Organizational Ecology and Industrial Economics," CEPR Discussion Papers 2649, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Koen Frenken & Ron A. Boschma, 2007. "A theoretical framework for Evolutionary Economic Geography: Industrial dynamics and urban growth as a branching process," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 0701, Utrecht University, Section of Economic Geography, revised Mar 2007.
  4. Klepper, Steven & Simons, Kenneth L, 1997. "Technological Extinctions of Industrial Firms: An Inquiry into Their Nature and Causes," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(2), pages 379-460, March.
  5. Ron A. Boschma & Rik Wenting, 2004. "The spatial evolution of the British automobile industry," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 0504, Utrecht University, Section of Economic Geography, revised Aug 2004.
  6. Koen Frenken & Frank Van Oort & Thijs Verburg, 2007. "Related Variety, Unrelated Variety and Regional Economic Growth," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(5), pages 685-697.
  7. Klepper, Steven, 1997. "Industry Life Cycles," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(1), pages 145-81.
  8. Leo van Wissen, 2004. "A Spatial Interpretation of the Density Dependence Model in Industrial Demography," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 22(3_4), pages 253-264, 04.
  9. Ron A. Boschma & Koen Frenken, 2006. "Why is economic geography not an evolutionary science? Towards an evolutionary economic geography," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 6(3), pages 273-302, June.
  10. Allen J. Scott, 1997. "The Cultural Economy of Cities," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 21(2), pages 323-339, 06.
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