Learning-by-Doing and the Development of Industrial Districts
21 Pages Posted: 6 Nov 1998
Date Written: July 27, 1998
Marshallian districts are locales that accommodate a large number of small firms producing similar goods to be exported and benefit from the accumulation of know-how associated with workers residing there. We study the making of such districts by assuming that the cost function of a firm is a decreasing function of the total output produced in the past by the firms established in the locale. The dynamic is described by a sequence of temporary equilibria in which firms equalize profits between locales at each period. Hence changing the spatial distribution of firms affects the production history of each district. When new firms set up in a locale, they exacerbate competition on the corresponding labor market, thus leading to a wage rise that reduces the incentives for firms to locate in the most efficient district. The short-run equilibrium distribution of firms are studied as well as the long-run properties of the adjustment process.
JEL Classification: O14, R12
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation