Markets, Networks, and the Rise of Chrysler in Old Detroit, 1920-1940

Posted: 29 Feb 2008

See all articles by Louis Kaplow

Louis Kaplow

Harvard Law School; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Steven Shavell

Harvard Law School; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Date Written: March 2000

Abstract

During the two decades before World War II, as this article demonstrates, the relationship between the Big Three American automakers and their parts suppliers was remarkably similar to the celebrated cooperation of Japanese auto assemblers and their trading partners after 1980. Unlike the arms-length multisourcing that characterized American firms after 1960, the prewar Detroit production culture featured collaborative development, cost sharing, and long-term innovative relationships. This system nurtured the rise of Chrysler, which not only grew from a standing start in 1920 to convert the General Motors-Ford duopoly into the `Big Three` by 1930, but also established itself as the industry`s leader in innovation and profitability.

Suggested Citation

Kaplow, Louis and Shavell, Steven, Markets, Networks, and the Rise of Chrysler in Old Detroit, 1920-1940 (March 2000). Enterprise & Society: The International Journal of Business History, Vol. 1, Issue 1, pp. 63-99, 2000. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=874152

Louis Kaplow (Contact Author)

Harvard Law School ( email )

1575 Massachusetts Avenue
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617-495-4101 (Phone)
617-496-4880 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.harvard.edu/faculty/directory/facdir.php?id=32&show=bibliography

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Steven Shavell (Contact Author)

Harvard Law School ( email )

1575 Massachusetts
Hauser 406
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-495-3668 (Phone)
617-496-2256 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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