Industrial Restructuring and the New Spatial Division of Labour
The last chapter drew upon a variety of statistical studies to show how post-war growth cycles in the British economy hid diverse patterns of fluctuation at a regional scale. In general terms the désynchronised regional cycles reflected the uneven development of traditional heavy industries and modern manufacturing sectors and hence of the different regions within which these industrial branches were concentrated. From the mid-1960s, however, the former pattern of désynchronised regional fluctuations changed into one of synchronised regional cycles. Uneven fluctuations thenceforth were manifested on a subregional scale, reflecting the newly prominent process of urban economic decay. Chapter 8 now goes on to examine the causes of this shift in the pattern of spatial development, relating it to fundamental changes in the character of national and international economic development which marked the arrival of the fourth Kondratieff downturn. It is suggested that this latest extended crisis of the British economy has provoked a fresh phase of industrial change and social recomposition, giving rise to the beginnings of a new spatial division of labour.
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