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Industrialization

  • By: Ronald V. Kalafsky
  • In: Encyclopedia of Geography
  • Edited by: Barney Warf
  • Subject:General Geography, Earth & Environmental Science

Industrialization refers to the economic growth and processes occurring at any geographical scale, ranging from a metropolitan region to an entire country. Historically, these processes entail the initiation and development of a manufacturing sector that first specializes in basic activities that include the production of commodity-type goods. Before this initial industrialization stage, many regions or countries are heavily involved in the primary economic sector, in agriculture and/or extractive activities. In the case of some countries with few or no natural resource endowments, reliance on the primary sector is untenable, thereby compelling countries into rapid industrialization.

The initial stages of industrialization (basic manufacturing) take advantage of the low-cost advantages that a newly industrialized region or country has, centered on available labor, natural resources, and/or a large market. ...

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