Elgar original reference
Edited by Patrizio Bianchi and Sandrine Labory
Patrizio Bianchi and Sandrine Labory Putting together a Handbook on Industrial Policy appears challenging at ﬁrst sight. Both the reﬂections within industrial economics and the practical experiences over time and across the world point to a richness of contexts, approaches, factors and determinants that make it diﬃcult to deﬁne the problems and delineate the ﬁelds of application. Hence we chose to start from empirical observation to arrive at general properties and systematic characteristics that theoretical perspectives should take into account and explain (an approach that classical economists took, and that the pioneers of industrial economics such as Bain also adopted). The Handbook has been put together with the aim of providing an overview of all the approaches and relevant themes of the ample ﬁeld of industrial policy. Our objective was not to promote a particular approach or school of thought. We think it is a task of the reader to derive the most relevant questions and the most relevant approaches from the richness of perspectives proposed in the Handbook. All chapters are written by specialists with deep knowledge of particular sectors, regions or policy ﬁelds that they have observed empirically. This make it possible to point to relevant current policy issues and derive implications for theory and methodology. The meaning of the term ‘industrial policy’ has changed a lot over time. Until the 1980s, the term meant the direct intervention of the state in the economy, the direct control by the government of large parts of the...