Beyond Marshallian Agglomeration Economies: The Roles of the Local Trade Association in a Meiji Japan Weaving District (1868-1912)
Recent studies have shown that economic development based on industrial districts or clusters is common not only in the Western nations but also among many developing countries, as Marshall might have anticipated. Similarly, in the development process of modern Japan, many industrial districts developed in various industries. Interestingly, they were much more organized and institutionalized than Marshall described. This article demonstrates that local trade associations had an important role in enhancing Marshallian externalities by facilitating joint actions for the supply of public goods, such as the creation of glocal district brands h and provision of technological and market information. In this article, we consider the case of Kiryu, which was one of the oldest and best-known silk weaving districts in modern Japan.
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