Essletzbichler, J. and Rigby, D.L.
Industrial and regional restructuring in the US women's dress industry, 1963-1992
Environment and Planning A, 33, (8), .
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In this paper we explore the impacts of competition on the US women's dress industry and examine the response of that industry in the form of technological change, industrial reorganization, and regional relocation. We demonstrate that women's dress producers adopted varying strategies to cope with competitive pressure at different time periods and in different places. In the 1960s, the dress industry was characterized by two main trends: technological change and domestic relocation of plants from the US northeast to the southeast and west. From the 1970s onwards, organizational changes became increasingly important as firms in core dress-production states such as California and New York externalized growing volumes of labor-intensive work. In part, the value added of this contribution to debates about industrial restructuring lies in our use of plant-level data that allow a richer understanding of the dynamics of industrial competition.
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