The competitiveness of business services in the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Wales, and the South East of England

D. M W N Hitchens, P. N. O'Farrell, C. D. Conway

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    16 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    In this paper we compare the competitiveness and performance of samples of business service offices located in two peripheral regions of the United Kingdom: Northern Ireland and Wales, and peripheral Republic of Ireland by making matched comparisons with counterparts in a core region-South East England. Offices in South East England are characterised by faster growth, higher productivity, wider markets, and greater export penetration than their counterparts in the other regions considered. The relative strengths, weaknesses, and constraints on raising productivity and competitiveness of peripherally located firms are examined. Special considera-tion is given to markets served, spatial structure of markets, locational constraints, and the adequacy of equipment and qualifications. An important factor influencing competitiveness is the ability of an office to provide high-quality specialist services, and alternative policies for achieving this aim are considered.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1299-1313
    Number of pages15
    JournalEnvironment and Planning A
    Volume28
    Issue number7
    Publication statusPublished - Jul 1996

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