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THE GEOGRAPHY OF PRODUCTION LINKAGES IN THE IRISH AND SCOTTISH MICROCOMPUTER INDUSTRY: THE ROLE OF INFORMATION EXCHANGE

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Abstract:

ABSTRACT

This paper considers the idea that technical information exchange in the context of time-based-competition encourages buyer-supplier proximity and local production linkages. The relevance of this idea was tested in a study of 11 subsidiaries of multinational microcomputer assemblers operating in Ireland and Scotland. We show that the assembly plants sourced the vast majority of inputs from regions outside Ireland and Britain and where we find regional linkages, proximity was generally not driven by considerations related to information exchange. Part of the explanation lies in the fact that the European operations played a limited role in technological co-ordination with suppliers. Another reason is that much of the technical information exchange in the industry is of a relatively limited intensity requiring low levels of face-to-face contact.

Keywords: Computer industry; Ireland and Scotland; information exchange; linkages; multinational enterprises; proximity

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9663.2006.00351.x

Affiliations: 1: National Institute for Regional and Spatial Analysis, Department of Geography, National University of Ireland, Maynooth, Ireland., Email: chris.vanegeraat@may.ie 2: Dublin City University Business School. Glasnevin, Dublin, Ireland., Email: david.jacobson@dcu.ie

Publication date: 2006-09-01

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