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Testing for localization using micro-geographic data

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  • Duranton, Gilles
  • Overman, Henry G.

Abstract

To study the detailed location patterns of industries, and particularly the tendency for industries to cluster relative to overall manufacturing, we develop distance-based tests of localisation. In contrast to previous studies, our approach allows us to assess the statistical significance of departures from randomness. In addition, we treat space as continuous instead of using an arbitrary collection of geographical units. This avoids problems relating to scale and borders. We apply these tests to an exhaustive UK data set. For four-digit industries, we find that (i) 52% of them are localised at a 5% confidence level, (ii) localisation mostly takes place at small scales below 50 kilometres, (iii) the degree of localisation is very skewed, and (iv) industries follow broad sectoral patterns with respect to localisation. Depending on the industry, smaller establishments can be the main drivers of both localisation and dispersion. Three-digit sectors show similar patterns of localisation at small scales as well as a tendency to localise at medium scales.

Suggested Citation

  • Duranton, Gilles & Overman, Henry G., 2005. "Testing for localization using micro-geographic data," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 581, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:581
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    File URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/581/
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Ellison, Glenn & Glaeser, Edward L, 1997. "Geographic Concentration in U.S. Manufacturing Industries: A Dartboard Approach," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(5), pages 889-927, October.
    2. Pierre-Philippe Combes & Miren Lafourcade, 2005. "Transport costs: measures, determinants, and regional policy implications for France," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 5(3), pages 319-349, June.
    3. Thomas J. Holmes & John J. Stevens, 2002. "Geographic Concentration and Establishment Scale," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 84(4), pages 682-690, November.
    4. Rosenthal, Stuart S. & Strange, William C., 2001. "The Determinants of Agglomeration," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 191-229, September.
    5. Devereux, Michael P. & Griffith, Rachel & Simpson, Helen, 2004. "The geographic distribution of production activity in the UK," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 533-564, September.
    6. Wagner, Alfred, 1891. "Marshall's Principles of Economics," History of Economic Thought Articles, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, vol. 5, pages 319-338.
    7. repec:hal:journl:halshs-00372646 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Quah, Danny, 1997. "Empirics for Growth and Distribution: Stratification, Polarization, and Convergence Clubs," CEPR Discussion Papers 1586, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    9. Maurel, Francoise & Sedillot, Beatrice, 1999. "A measure of the geographic concentration in french manufacturing industries," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(5), pages 575-604, September.
    10. Eric Marcon & Florence Puech, 2003. "Evaluating the geographic concentration of industries using distance-based methods," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 3(4), pages 409-428, October.
    11. Eric Marcon & Florence Puech, 2003. "Evaluating the Geographic Concentration of Industries Using Distance-Based Methods," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00372646, HAL.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Localisation; clusters; k-density; spatial statistics. JEL classification codes: C19; R12; L70.;

    JEL classification:

    • C19 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Other
    • R12 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Size and Spatial Distributions of Regional Economic Activity; Interregional Trade (economic geography)
    • L70 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Primary Products and Construction - - - General

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