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Flexible Specialization and Green Entrepreneurship: Secondary Wood Processing in the Vancouver Metropolitan region

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  • Ecology
  • Geography


This research assesses the location behaviour and environmental performance of ‘value-added’ wood processing activities in Vancouver Metropolitan region. Conceptually the study is informed by an integration of the flexible specialization model with green entrepreneurship. Empirically, the study adopts an extended case study approach and is based on in-depth semi-structured interviews with respondents of 41 small firms representing the major sub-segments of the value-added wood products industry in the Vancouver Metro region as well as research and industry associations. These interviews were stratified among three zones: the inner-city and suburbs, outer suburbs, and the Fraser Valley. The study found that these firms perceive diverse location advantages and disadvantages and are flexibly specialized to some degree with respect to local entrepreneurship, access to local labour pools, diverse markets, material supplies and external economies. As green entrepreneurs, they are adopters rather than leaders, and use and awareness about certification schemes is varied.

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