Midterm (Geog 350, Spring 2001)

Select three (3) of the following questions for report- or essay- type statements (20 points or minutes each):

Please note:
  1. Before you make your final selection, be sure you can avoid unnecessary repetitions between answers
  2. Be "specific" and identify your understanding of all important analytical terms (in your text or as an appendix)

  1. Location quotients measure facets of both "Specialization" (vs. Diversification) and "Localization" (vs. Dispersion). What does this specialization/localization distinction mean in the context of the location quotients which you calculated for your county? In other words, characterize your county's economy in terms of these concepts.

    The "Location quotient" can be numerically expressed in two ways expressing "localization" or "specialization", respectively.
    1. The localization concept focuses on the INDUSTRY. An industry may be relatively localized (or, alternatively, dispersed). This would mean that a relatively high percentage of the total (state or national) industry is concentrated in only a few number of sub-regions (e.g. counties). The location quotient would then be expressed as:
      	TIMBER INDUSTRY Employment in County X
      	All TIMBER INDUSTRY Employment in U.S.
      L.Q.=   ======================================
            Total Manufacturing Employment in County X 
              Total Manufacturing Employment in U.S.
    2. The specialization concept focuses on a region. A region (such as your county) is relatively specialized or diversified (relative to the state or the country). Thus, we would want to position the region (not the industry as in the localization example) in the numerator:
      	Timber Industry Employment in COUNTY X
            Total Manufacturing Employment in COUNTY X 
      L.Q.= ==========================================
      	All Timber Industry Employment in U.S.
              Total Manufacturing Employment in U.S.
    Thus, in the application of these concepts to your county, you want to discuss the relative large (or small) shares your county has of the total industry and possibly compare your county's different industries (with respect to their relative localization) under "localization/dispersion". When you discuss "specialization" (or diversification), you should be interested in the way different industries contribute to the region's specialization.

    Of course, as we have discovered in class and Hoover's readings, we can get a more complete picture of an industry's localization by calculating a "coefficient of localization" and of a region's specialization by calculating a "coefficient of specialization".

  2. Review and discuss Hoover's chapter 9 on "Regions", with particular emphasis on the various types of regions and their usefulness for regional economic analysis.

  3. "A region's industrial composition or "mix" is a prime indicator of the region's growth potential!" Explain and discuss! You do not have to agree with this statement; It can be interpreted in at least two ways (incl. a combination of the two).
    1. It could be interpreted strictly in terms of shift and share analysis. Here it would mean that only or mainly compositional effects are important for differential growth (leading to "shifts") of regions. Thus, a discussion could include arguments as to why -- and under what conditions -- differential growth (the "shift") may indeed be based on a favorable industry mix and not on a differential growth of individual industries. But, in general, differential effects are also rather important.... If you use these terms and shift and share concepts, they need to be defined....
      If above average growth is based on a region's composition, this could imply that the growth is dependent on "what is there already", while a differential effect might imply a break with the old structure...
    2. A second, legitimate interpretation might ignore shift and share analysis altogether (I did not specify that, but I always appreciate reading something which has been covered in class and the readings) and suggest that the reference to a "mix" might imply the interdependencies within the "mixture": There are more and less favorable mixes for example from the point of view of agglomeration benefits (economies) and the region's ability to attract new industries or avoid losing old ones.

  4. Creating the first part of your "Resource Page" required a 50-word statement about the "topical interests" you wish to pursue at the county level. Now, at the mid-quarter point, and after you had a chance to explore this topical area, please reformulate and expand (100 - 150 words) this statement (later to be added to your resource page).

  5. As you know, we are now beginning the second part of Geog 350, with its emphasis on functional facets, economic linkages and impact analyses. Based on our earlier discussion of forward and backward linkages, frequent reference to the "openness" of regions and your readings for this week, conceptualize and sketch your understanding of this new perspective.

    See readings for week 5


    1. Mini-Assignment (due today):
      Please submit the (complete) citation for today's mini-assignment as part of this test. If have already added this topical and academic reference/resource to your online Resource Page, just identify the author or the title.

    In case you are behind with your assignments: When do you expect to finish and submit those which are missing?