Handbook of Research on Cluster Theory

Handbook of Research on Cluster Theory

Handbooks of Research on Clusters series

Edited by Charlie Karlsson

Clusters have increasingly dominated local and regional development policies in recent decades and the growing intellectual and political interest for clusters and clustering is the prime motivation for this Handbook. Charlie Karlsson unites leading experts to present a thorough overview of economic cluster research.

Chapter 9: Industrial Clusters in the Input–Output Economic System

Michael Sonis, Geoffrey J.D. Hewings and Dong Guo

Subjects: economics and finance, regional economics, urban and regional studies, clusters, regional economics


Michael Sonis, Geoffrey J.D. Hewings and Dong Guo 1 Introduction This chapter returns to the issue of cluster identification using a set of inter-industry accounts; in this sense, it is rooted more in the legacy of industrial cluster and complex analysis associated with the early work of Czamanksi (1971, 1974, 1976) and Czamanski and Ablas (1979) and deepens the now more involved cluster-based development strategies described in detail by Bergman and Feser (2000) and the methods linking clusters and innovation presented in Bröcker et al. (2003). It does not focus on the more extensive cluster-based approaches popularized by Porter (1990) since the objective is to explore the industrial interdependencies in more detail. However, it does share with Dridi and Hewings (2002) the need to make more imaginative use of the structures present in interindustry tables to draw out more information about the structure of the economy being evaluated. The major purpose of this chapter is to propose a new method of identification of the more important industrial (sectoral) backward and forward linkages clusters in input–output systems in a way that avoids the rigidities of some of the earlier approaches (that identified mutually exclusive clusters). Our attention is directed to the application and further elaboration of the ideas of combinatorial topology to the analysis of economic structure of input–output systems in the form of structural Q-analysis originally proposed by Atkin (1974, 1981) for the analysis of the structure of human interactions. Our central concern...

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