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Competition for metropolitan resources: the 'crowding out' of London's manufacturing industry?

  • Economics


In this paper we consider the extent to which manufacturing activity in London in the 1980s has been influenced by a 'crowding-out' effect as a result of the expansion of 'global-city' functions within the capital. First, a brief outline is provided of the concept of the global city and the related interpretations of urban manufacturing change. We then examine the relevance of global-city hypotheses, focusing on three different empirical aspects of London's manufacturing in the 1980s -- employment change, floorspace and land-use issues, and change in firm stock, output, and productivity. The conclusion is that the 'crowding-out' hypothesis of manufacturing change expressed in the literature on global cities is not demonstrated by the existing evidence, and that such an hypothesis is an oversimplified way of examining the complexities of manufacturing change across London over this period.

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