Technological variety, technological change and a geography of production techniques

David L. Rigby, Jürgen Essletzbichler

Publication: Scientific journalJournal articlepeer-review


How much heterogeneity in techniques of production exists within the economy, and how does that heterogeneity move over time? In this paper we show that the range of production techniques employed by establishments within individual manufacturing industries is large. We go on to show that technological heterogeneity persists over time: there is no evidence of convergence to best-practice or some other point in technology space. Next, we explore the geography of variety and reveal that there are significant spatial differences in the production techniques employed by manufacturing plants in the same industry. Finally, we examine how these geographical differences move over time, measuring the processes that drive the creation and destruction of the range of production techniques across industries and regions in the US economy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45 - 70
JournalJournal of Economic Geography
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2006

Austrian Classification of Fields of Science and Technology (ÖFOS)

  • 507026 Economic geography

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