“The evolution of the electronics industry in Johor (Malaysia): Strategic coupling, adaptiveness, adaptation, and the role of agency,” an article co-authored by Francis Hutchinson in GeoForum August 2016 issue

The article which was first published by GeoForum, a leading economic geography journal, for the August 2016 issue (Volume 74, Pages 74 – 87), can be viewed here.

The article empirically examines the trajectory of the electrical and electronics industry in Johor (Malaysia), adopting concepts collectively from the global production networks and evolutionary economic geography literature. Based on trends in firm entries and exit as well as interviews with companies, there are limited robustness in the industry’s trajectory. While there is evidence of the role of ‘structure’ in this outcome, both co-authors argue that human agency – particularly the actions of subnational policy-makers – is key. This is manifest in a preference for fostering regional ‘adaptiveness’ through the often uncritical promotion of a diversity of economic sectors.

Dr Francis Hutchinson is Senior Fellow and Coordinator, Regional Economic Studies Programme, at ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute.

The above article was also co-authored by Leo van Grunsven from Section Economic Geography, Department of Human Geography and Planning, Faculty of Geosciences, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands.