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Expansion and Transformation of the Export-Oriented Silk Weaving District: The Case of Fukui in Japan from 1890 to 1919

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  • Tomoko Hashino

    () (Graduate School of Economics, Kobe University)

  • Keijiro Otsuka

    () (National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies)

Abstract

The development of the Fukui silk weaving district was curious because it became the largest industrial district of habutae, or plain silk, fabric production in Japan within a decade after it began operations in the late 1880s. Initially, the production of habutae rapidly spread geographically from the capital city to surrounding areas in the same prefecture. Fukui introduced power looms beginning in the mid-1900s, which was the earliest among Japan fs silk weaving districts. Production was first dominated by small family firms, but later by factories employing 10 or more workers. Interestingly, Fukui fs emphasis on weaving habutae gradually shifted, and a range of more sophisticated products emerged during the later stages of the silk industry fs development in the district. This study attempts to explore the causes of the rapid expansion and transformation of the Fukui silk weaving district and the effects on the size, location, structure, and labour productivity of weaving firms.

Suggested Citation

  • Tomoko Hashino & Keijiro Otsuka, 2013. "Expansion and Transformation of the Export-Oriented Silk Weaving District: The Case of Fukui in Japan from 1890 to 1919," Discussion Papers 1303, Graduate School of Economics, Kobe University.
  • Handle: RePEc:koe:wpaper:1303
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    File URL: http://www.econ.kobe-u.ac.jp/RePEc/koe/wpaper/2013/1303.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Minami, Ryoshin, 1977. "Mechanical Power in the Industrialization of Japan," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 37(04), pages 935-958, December.
    2. Khondoker Abdul Mottaleb & Tetsushi Sonobe, 2011. "An Inquiry into the Rapid Growth of the Garment Industry in Bangladesh," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 60(1), pages 67-89.
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    4. Tomoko Hashino & Keijiro Otsuka, 2013. "Hand looms, power looms, and changing production organizations: the case of the Kiryū weaving district in early twentieth-century Japan," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 66(3), pages 785-804, August.
    5. Tomoko Hashino & Osamu Saito, 2004. "Tradition and interaction: research trends in modern Japanese industrial history," Australian Economic History Review, Economic History Society of Australia and New Zealand, vol. 44(3), pages 241-258, November.
    6. Tomoko Hashino & Takafumi Kurosawa, 2011. "Beyond Marshallian Agglomeration Economies: The Roles of the Local Trade Association in a Meiji Japan Weaving District (1868-1912)," Discussion Papers 1113, Graduate School of Economics, Kobe University.
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    8. Tomoko Hashino, 2012. "Institutionalising Technical Education: The Case Of Weaving Districts In Meiji Japan," Australian Economic History Review, Economic History Society of Australia and New Zealand, vol. 52(1), pages 25-42, March.
    9. Broadberry, Stephen N & Gupta, Bishnupriya, 2005. "The Early Modern Great Divergence: Wages, Prices and Economic Development in Europe and Asia, 1500-1800," CEPR Discussion Papers 4947, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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