institutional thickness

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‘The localised conditions that are crucial to the particular articulation of localities and regions within wider scale processes of economic transformation’ (Henry (2001) Env. & Plan. A 33). Institutional thickness includes trade associations, voluntary agencies, sectoral coalitions, concrete institutions, and local elites—their effects on local policy, and their consensus institutions: common agreements, shared views and interpretations, and unwritten laws.

E. Sheppard (2002) is sceptical: ‘how, exactly, does institutional thickness promote local economic development and prosperity? Further, how do we explain the fact that some very successful regions do not appear to be underpinned by a highly concentrated and co-ordinated matrix of institutions?’ Does institutional thickness stimulate growth, or vice-versa? (A. Wood and D. Valler2004).

Subjects: Earth Sciences and Geography.

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