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Commodity Chains: what can we learn from a business history of the rubber chain? (1870-1910)

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  • Felipe Tamega Fernandes

    () (Harvard Business School, Entrepreneurial Management Unit)

Abstract

The literature on the rubber boom applied a Dependendist view of rubber production in the Brazilian Amazon. Even though a sizable surplus was generated in the rubber chain, it was mostly appropriated by foreigners. This view is in tune with the Global Commodity Chain approach that argues that manufacturing/core economies absorb the bulk of surplus generated in the commodity chain. This paper challenges both frameworks and asks for a more careful examination of the business history of commodity chains: it is a first step in this direction through an analysis of the relationship between two nodes of the rubber chain.

Suggested Citation

  • Felipe Tamega Fernandes, 2010. "Commodity Chains: what can we learn from a business history of the rubber chain? (1870-1910)," Harvard Business School Working Papers 10-089, Harvard Business School.
  • Handle: RePEc:hbs:wpaper:10-089
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    Keywords

    Rubber; Commodities; Commodity Chains; Business History; Amazon Region; Brazil.;

    JEL classification:

    • L1 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance
    • L2 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior
    • L73 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Primary Products and Construction - - - Forest Products
    • N56 - Economic History - - Agriculture, Natural Resources, Environment and Extractive Industries - - - Latin America; Caribbean
    • N86 - Economic History - - Micro-Business History - - - Latin America; Caribbean

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