Industrial policies as a lever of change? American, Asian, and European industries in perspective

Theme N°: 

A general agreement assumes that carmakers and tier-one suppliers stimulate and enhance competition between countries and supranational regions, enforcing their industrial policies. However, one might also think about industrial policies as a combination of measures taking into account firm strategies and other parameters. In that perspective, we have to observe more carefully the way these policies are built in America, Asia and Europe (both at regional, national and supra-national levels), their codeterminations and combinations, their recent evolutions and/or their structures.
One important aspect to inquire is the evolution of industrial policies in the context of crisis, since the 2008-2009 crisis and the “second effect of the crisis” in 2012-2013 (especially in Europe) shed light on the measures raised to tackle the crisis. Do we observe any change in the nature of the measures and policies when comparing them with previous crisis? Is there any turn fostering neoliberal policies and competition between countries and firms? Those questions will also lead us towards a more sound analysis of the changes affecting the policy makers, their structures, their organizations, and their connections with each other, with employer and professional organizations, and with firms. Whereas the policy makers are often presented as homogeneous and rules-driven public organizations, a deeper attention to the power relationships, and to the “professional segmentations” in the process of industrial policies’ building, might give further explanations about the contents and tendencies of the policies. These “public policies approaches” will also be of much importance when dealing with the impacts of such policies on the automotive industry (in terms of capacities transferability, technology assimilation, comparison of competitiveness, choices done by carmakers and suppliers about the localisation and/or re-allocation of production and design activities, etc.). How are industrial policies changing the geopolitics of the world automobile industry? How do these politics impact industries, companies, and sectors, and in particular, trade policies? How do these policies play out in the restructuring process (industries, political actors, institutions and finance)?

In order to have a sounder understanding about the emergence processes and restructuring processes affecting the American, Asian, and European industries, we call for papers in this theme dealing with those three dimensions: the evolutions of industrial policies in a period of crisis – the policy makers, their structures, organizations, and networks – and the impact of industrial policies on the automotive industry. In addition, following our previous colloquiums, it is also of great importance to collect material about the regional integration processes (commercial, fiscal, labour, market policies) and the "commercial or trade policies at bilateral, regional or multilateral levels" to fully understand the various emergence processes. Thus, questions pertaining to the link between local supply, demand and design – and the forms that they assume depending on the period in question, the country, the political, economic, industrial, commercial and fiscal policy or investors’ origins – should clearly be analysed or at least presented in proposed studies. Studies should be comparative in nature, cover these three sub-themes, and/or rooted in strong empirical observations (whether case studies, international or historical comparisons). Papers based on original theoretical viewpoints and/or research questions at the margins of these three subthemes, that shed light to the emergence processes and restructuring processes in America, Asia, Europe, will also be assessed with much attention.

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Concéption Tommaso Pardi
Administration Juan Sebastian Carbonell, Lorenza MonacoGéry Deffontaines

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