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Organizational foundations of export performance: The case of the Turkish apparel industry

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Abstract:

To provide an overview of the organizational changes Turkish apparel firms have undertaken in the 1990s and early 2000s and to show how these changes affect sector's export performance. Designed as a case study that uses interview and archival data. Interviews with company representatives, conducted in Turkey and Germany during 1996-2001, are primary sources of information. As in all case study research, the interviews are supplemented by archival data, including statistical reports published by host country governments, annual company reports, company Web sites, industry magazines, research reports prepared by the local industry associations, articles appearing in the mass media including the Internet. While Turkey has historically been dependent on the EU market and this dependence has helped Turkish manufacturers develop new capabilities, recent organizational trends in the industry point to a struggle by manufacturers to break out of this dependence and expand in new markets. Three overarching organizational trends stand out: the increasing creation of backward and forward linkages, both domestic and foreign, the relocation of production to cheaper sites, both inland and overseas, and the increase in the scale and scope of partnerships formed with US companies. These partnerships not only create a new set of relationships, but also transform the existing ones. Relies on the respondents' knowledge of past and present events and documentary data to make inferences about process and change in the industry. Not based on a random sample and oversamples large firms. A useful overview of organizational changes that presents firm-level data. May provide insight into how export growth in apparel may be sustained beyond 2004.

Keywords: Exports; Garment Industry; International Investments; National Economy; Turkey

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/13612020410547806

Publication date: March 1, 2004

mcb/284/2004/00000008/00000003/art00003
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