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Historical industrialisation, path dependence and contemporary culture: the lasting imprint of economic heritage on local communities

Huggins, Robert ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9798-8614, Stuetzer, Michael, Obschonka, Martin and Thompson, Piers 2021. Historical industrialisation, path dependence and contemporary culture: the lasting imprint of economic heritage on local communities. Journal of Economic Geography 21 (6) , pp. 841-867. 10.1093/jeg/lbab010

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Abstract

Culture matters for regional economic development and is one source of cognitive lock-in that influences path creation and dependency. However, little is known about the sources of regional variation in culture. This study explores the long-term imprinting effect of the Industrial Revolution on cultural practices across local communities in Great Britain. Historical data from 1891 on the employment in large-scale industries (e.g. textiles and steel) is used to estimate causal effects of industrialisation on five cultural dimensions. It is found that historical industrialisation is still reflected in contemporary local cultures marked by lower engagement with education and employment, less adherence to social rules but stronger collective action and social cohesion. It is concluded that one reason for the relatively poor effect of the public policies on local and regional economic development is that historical industrialisation has left a lasting legacy on contemporary culture in many places that impairs institutional efforts to foster change.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Geography and Planning (GEOPL)
Additional Information: This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISSN: 1468-2702
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 11 October 2021
Date of Acceptance: 25 February 2021
Last Modified: 10 Nov 2022 09:52
URI: https://orca.cardiff.ac.uk/id/eprint/144779

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