Global relocation Market saturation Computer sector Industrial strategy
Statistical and Social Inquiry Society of Ireland
Bradley, John. 'The computer sector in Irish manufacturing: past triumphs, present strains, future challenges'. - Dublin: Journal of the Statistical and Social Inquiry Society of Ireland,Vol. XXXI, 2001/2002, pp26-73
Journal of the Statistical and Social Inquiry Society of Ireland Vol. XXXI 2001/2002
The health of the computer sector has come to symbolise the
modernisation and rapid growth of the Irish economy during the 1990s. Any threats
to its sustainability strike at the heart of broader economic and industrial strategy.
After a brief statistical overview, this paper examines the wider strategic factors that
facilitated the rise of the Irish computer “agglomeration”. It describes how domestic
policy evolved within a series of coherent frameworks that took account of the
nature of the external environment (opportunities and threats) as well as realistic
views of domestic capabilities (strengths and weaknesses). Within these
frameworks, the decisions of individual policymakers shaped an industrial strategy
that took decades to bear fruit and was a key contribution to bringing about
convergence to EU standards of living. The paper also explores the likely future of
the Irish computer sector, as it attempts to deal with an unfolding recession that
started in the United States, the source of almost all high technology inward
investment, but threatens to spread to Europe and elsewhere, key destinations of
Irish computer-related exports. When the recession passes, the paper suggests that
the Irish computer sector is unlikely simply to pick up where it left off in the
buoyant latter part of the year 2000, but will undergo fundamental evolution and
change in order to meet new global technological and economic challenges.
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