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ECONOMIC GEOGRAPHY ISSUE: Vol. 93 No. 2 March 2017




Design of new Economic Geography JournalEconomic Geography is an internationally peer-reviewed journal, committed to publishing cutting-edge research that makes theoretical advances to the discipline. Our long-standing specialization is to publish the best theoretically-based empirical articles that deepen the understanding of significant economic geography issues around the world. Owned by Clark University since 1925, Economic Geography actively supports scholarly activities of economic geographers. Economic Geography is published five times annually in January, March, June, August, and November.





Journal Articl



Psychology and the Geography of Innovation

Neil Lee, Pages 106–130
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Location Choices of Chinese Multinationals in Europe: The Role of Overseas Communities

Bas Karreman, Martijn J. Burger, and Frank G. van Oort, Pages 131–161
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From Futures Markets to the Farm Gate: A Study of Price Formation along Tanzania’s Coffee Commodity Chain

Hannah K. Bargawi and Susan A. Newman, Pages 162–184
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The Matching of STEM Degree Holders with STEM Occupations in Large Metropolitan Labor Markets in the United States

Richard Wright, Mark Ellis, and Matthew Townley, Pages 185–201
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Unruly Markets, the Global Factory, and Uneven Development

Assembling Export Markets: The Making and Unmaking of Global Food Connections in West Africa, By Stefan Ouma
Global Displacements: The Making of Uneven Development in the Caribbean, By Marion Werner
Christian Berndt, pages 202–208
Read Book Review

Global Production Networks. Theorizing Economic Development in an Interconnected World, By Neil M. Coe and Henry Wai-Chung Yeung
Sabine Dörry, pages 209–211
Read Book Review


Fast Policy: Experimental Statecraft at the Thresholds of Neoliberalism, By Jamie Peck and Nik Theodore
I-Chun Catherine Chang, pages 212–214
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Psychology and the Geography of Innovation

Neil Lee

Abstract: Intangibles, such as tolerance, creativity and trust, are increasingly seen as important for the geography of innovation. Yet these factors have often been poorly approximated in empirical research that has used generalized proxy measures to account for subtle personal differences. This article argues that the psychological literature on personality traits can help address this issue and provide important insights into the socioinstitutional determinants of innovation. It uses a unique, large-scale psychological survey to investigate the relationship between the Big Five personality traits commonly used in psychology—openness to experience, neuroticism, extraversion, agreeableness, and conscientiousness—and patenting in travel-to-work areas in England and Wales. The main personality trait associated with innovation is conscientiousness, a trait defined by organization, hard work, and task completion. Instrumental variable analysis using religious observance in 1851 suggests that this is a causal relationship. Research on the role of intangibles in innovation has been preoccupied by factors, such as creativity and trust, but the results of this article suggest that a new focus—on hard work and organizational ability—is needed.

Key words: innovation, culture, personality traits, geography, England and Wales, psychology

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Location Choices of Chinese Multinationals in Europe: The Role of Overseas Communities

Bas Karreman, Martijn J. Burger, and Frank G. van Oort


Abstract: Overseas Chinese communities are an important determinant in the location choice of greenfield investments made by mainland Chinese multinational enterprises across European regions. Conceptually embedded in a relational approach, this effect is shown through an empirical analysis of an exhaustive set of investment projects across NUTS-1 regions in twenty-six European countries for the period 2003–2010. When controlling for endogeneity bias and the embeddedness of existing Chinese economic activity, we find that the importance of overseas communities in the location choices of Chinese firms is based on increased access to strategic information. Our results confirm that the relationship between the size of an overseas Chinese community and the probability of Chinese investment is stronger for communities hosting newer generations of Chinese migrants; in addition, they partially corroborate that this relationship is stronger when the education level of the community’s Chinese migrants is higher. Our findings are particularly robust in the context of knowledge-intensive sectors and high value-added functions.

Key words: overseas Chinese communities, China, Europe, greenfield FDI, relational view


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From Futures Markets to the Farm Gate: A Study of Price Formation along Tanzania’s Coffee Commodity Chain


Hannah K. Bargawi and Susan A. Newman

Abstract: This article examines the nature of price formation and transmission in the Tanzanian coffee price chain. To date, research on the real-world processes of price formation has been scant in economic geography and extant literatures. This article addresses this by focusing on price formation in geographically distant but connected markets, and the interaction between global and local price dynamics. The article employs a new framework that builds on chain and network approaches by integrating concepts from marketization and institutional approaches. The study finds that the world price of coffee has become increasingly volatile as a result of the behavior of international coffee traders and broader shifts in the character of global capital accumulation. It also demonstrates the varying role domestic marketing and local-level institutions play in shaping price formation and cushioning Tanzanian producers from sudden price changes. Finally, the study highlights the role prices, via these local-level institutions, play in extenuating differentiation between producers, creating winners and losers.

Key words: coffee, commodity chain, price transmission, Tanzania, financialization

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The Matching of STEM Degree Holders with STEM Occupations in Large Metropolitan Labor Markets in the United States

Richard Wright, Mark Ellis, and Matthew Townley

Abstract: Workers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) are vital for regional and national prosperity. Not every person with STEM qualifications, however, finds employment in a STEM job. This article analyzes the geography of this matching between STEM degree holders and certain types of STEM occupations across large metropolitan labor markets in the United States. We find that although labor-market size has no effect, living in denser STEM labor markets elevates the probabilities of matching; having an advanced degree enhances this effect. Women are also far less likely to be matched than men; being black or Latino additionally lowers the chances of matching. Combining spatial effects with individual attributes increases probabilities of matching in places with high concentrations of STEM jobs for women, racial minorities, and the foreign born, but these advantages are often the same for white, native-born men. In denser STEM labor markets the job-matching advantage spans the labor pool, conferring no differential benefit for different population subgroups.

Key words: STEM, matching, degree, job, agglomeration, gender, race, age, nativity, creative class

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Published by Clark University since 1925.


June 2017

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