Can local markets and clusters represent a powerful alternative to global markets? Do transnational corporations and global buyers play a role and enhance or undermine local firms’ upgrading and learning? What opportunities do clustering and global value chains offer to SMEs in global markets?
Upgrading to Compete shows that both the local and the global dimensions matter at once. Clustering and collaborating with other local firms offers substantial advantages, and participating in global value chains and interacting with foreign buyers and companies may enhance local firms’ capabilities and access to distant markets as well. However, what matters most markedly is the form of governance of value chains and clusters, which affects the upgrading process of local SMEs. Thus, hierarchical and less cooperative chains often inhibit more complex and promising forms of upgrading.
The book illustrates this point with original empirical evidence from several clusters in Latin America. Case studies from Brazil, Chile, Mexico, and Nicaragua are supplemented by desk studies on other experiences in the region. The methodological foundations and the policy implications of these analyses are also exhaustively addressed.
An international team of researchers from Italy and Latin America working with Inter-American Development Bank staff applies analyses of industry clusters and global supply chains to compelling Latin American success stories. In-depth case studies examine Nicaraguan dairy, Brazilian fresh fruit, Chilean salmon, Brazilian metalworking, Mexican software—and one disappointing experience, Mexican rustic furniture. While emphasizing distinctions among sectors, the authors extract recommendations aimed at promoting the global competitiveness of small and medium-sized firms and increasing productivity, salaries, and profits.
This unusually rich set of integrated case studies explains why some clusters of SMEs are able to upgrade and provide for sustainable income growth, and how policies can facilitate this outcome.
A pathbreaking contribution to the literature on production systems. This book emphasizes the dynamics of the interaction of industrial districts and global value chains in the changing business environment of Latin America. A must-read for analytical scholars and for policymakers alike.
At a time when there is growing interest in Latin America in active production sector strategies and in the role of SMEs, Pietrobelli and Rabellotti make in this book an essential contribution. Upgrading to Compete is full of quality information and insights. I look forward to the introduction of many of the ideas and recommendations of this book into policy action.
This book offers a new way of thinking into fundamental aspects of industrial organization and international trade and exploits original case studies to develop new ideas and stylized facts.
- 330 pages
- 6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches
- David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies
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