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By Carlo Pietrobelli, Arni Sverrison

Clusters of small and medium sized corporations (SMEs) need to adapt always to a quick altering surroundings. This new publication, containing contributions on nations starting from Italy and Mexico to China and India, acknowledges the disparity among stipulations in those international locations and poses a few attention-grabbing questions on what may be termed publish cluster globalization. This publication may be of curiosity to scholars, teachers and coverage makers within the fields of financial geography, foreign enterprise and entrepreneurship.

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E. e. e. authority and power relationships that determine how financial, material, and human resources are allocated and flow within a chain). (Gereffi 1994: 219) In addition, institutional and political processes are also mentioned as important. The logical reduction in proposition (1) is accomplished in three steps: first, economic activities are separated from non-economic and the latter is relegated to analysis based on proposition (3); second, the relevant economic activities are limited to those that are ‘value-adding’ thus conveniently excluding all ‘public economies’ as well as ‘private economies’ such as the unpaid work of women in the household, and third, proposition (1) posits a ‘sequence’ and an ‘input-output structure’, which is what makes the chain into a chain.

Indeed, these types appear more as generalised descriptions of certain features of the industries purported to be examples of the underlying theoretical concepts. It is difficult to have any quarrels with these descriptions as such. The issue is rather whether the distinctions would have been 22 Árni Sverrisson different, if other industries had been used as models. How, for example, would we categorise the production chain for personal computer software? It is more or less ‘controlled’ by Microsoft, in so far as technical standards are concerned, at least, and the control of physical flows and technical specifications seems central to Gereffi’s conception.

Developments since he wrote this have largely confirmed his forecast. Perhaps this is because relocation of production to the South has been slower in the sectors and branches identified as PDs, and these chains are therefore still very much a core (and Korean/Brazilian) affair (see, however, Lee and Cason 1994, and Kim and Lee 1994). As van Dooren (this volume) points out, some producer organisations are, in turn, reduced to sweatshops that supply their more fortunate competitors. Dolan and Humphrey note this variability but conclude that in the case of fresh vegetables ‘large retailers in Europe play a decisive role in structuring the production and processing of fresh vegetables exported from Africa’ (2000: 147).

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