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Did globalization aid industrial development in colonial India?: a study of knowledge transfer in the iron industry

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The paper explores the link between international economic integration and technological capability in colonial India. The example of iron industry shows that many new ideas and skills flowed into India from Europe, but not all met with commercial success. The essay suggests that in those fields in which the costs of complementary factors were relatively low, the chance of success was higher. This condition was present in the craft of the blacksmith, in which the main complementary input was craftsmanship. The condition was slow to develop in iron-smelting, where the costs of fuel, labour, capital, and carriage of ore were high in the mid-nineteenth century.

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en

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application/pdf

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http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/27876/1/WP127.pdf

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