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6 Questions for review and discussion

Question 1

Complete the following sentences by selecting the correct word or phrase from the list below to fill in the spaces:


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5 Conclusion

The idea of the double whammy brings together the two driving forces behind changes in industrial structure, with which this course opened and now closes. The use of a new technology causes a decline in the costs of production, which in turn encourages a rapid take-up by consumers of products embodying the new technology. This course has explored the factors affecting consumer demand. While the price of the product was found to be of crucial importance, socio-economic influences such as cultu
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4.3.1 Knowledge and learning in the industry life cycle

In Section 3 we described technology as ‘given’ to firms. Now let us reflect on that idea. We can think of technology as consisting of bodies of knowledge necessary to produce artefacts. An appreciation of the importance of knowledge to economic activity is not new, for it was recognised by the eminent eco
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5 Conclusion

This chapter has enabled you to think about the essential role of technological change in determining economy-wide growth and the growth of firms and industries. We have seen that many issues surrounding the new economy are really issues around the dynamics of technological change: rapid increases in productivity, the emergence of many small firms, new products and new processes, and so on. The main lesson of the course has been to provide a historical perspective to the introduction of new t
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4.5 Technological change

In both industries the fall in prices was driven by radical changes in the production of the products. How might we investigate the technological changes and the changes in quality that occurred in both industries simultaneously with the drastic fall in prices? There are various methods used by economists to measure technological change. Some methods focus on the ‘inputs’ into the innovation process, such as the spending on research and development by firms. But this is not ideal as it do
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4.4 Prices and industrial change

Many of the new entrants entered by introducing a new variation of the product. In fact, the early period in both industries was characterised by much technological change in the form of product innovation. Once a product standard emerged, product and process innovations around that standard led to a drastic fall in the product price in both industries. We will now look at some of the indicators of this turbulence in technology and prices.

How can we look at price changes over time in i
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Keep on learning

Study another free course

There are more than 800 courses on OpenLearn for you to
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Learning outcomes

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • identify the value and best way of note taking.


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Introduction

This course will help you identify the value and best ways of note taking. It is based on listening to an audio file that contains a discussion between teaching team members of D218 Social Policy: Welfare, Power and Diversity, a current Open University course. It was originally 23 minutes in length and was recorded in 1998.

This OpenLearn course provides a sample of Level 1 study in Author(s): The Open University

1 Capturing the oil industry

The oil industry is perhaps the archetypal globalised industry. Dominated by a few multi-national companies, it is highly centralised at the level of corporate power but, like corporations, investment and trade in the oil industry are also highly mobile. The long reach of the global oil economy is a consequence of the distance between the location of significant oil reserves and the location of the major markets for oil. The reserves of oil currently expected to last more than fifty years are
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Introduction

The material presented here focuses on the politics of racial violence in Britain. The material is an audio file, originally 30 minutes in length, and examines the issues around this subject. It was recorded in 1995.

This OpenLearn course provides a sample of Level 2 study in Sociology.


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Acknowledgements

The content acknowledged below is Proprietary (see terms and conditions) and is used under licence.

This extract is taken from D218: Social policy: welfare, power and diversity, produced by the BBC on behalf of the Open University.

© 2007 The Open University.


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1 Developing reading skills

John Clarke and course team member Ross Fergusson, look at developing reading skills in the context of Social Science resources, with suggestions on how to read such materials critically and effectively. The material is primarily an audio file, 11 minutes in length and recorded in 1998.

Participants in the audio programme were:

  • John Clarke Professor of Social Policy at The Open University;

  • Ross Ferguson Social Science
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Learning outcomes

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • read Social Science materials critically and effectively.


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7 Conclusion

We have explored nations, national self-determination and secession as living political ideas. Perhaps the key points to emerge from the discussion are that:

  • the nation-state is the basic political community in the contemporary world, despite regional and global challenges;

  • subjective approaches to defining nations, prioritising awareness of belonging to a national group, have advantages over efforts to construct objective definitions;
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2.1.1 Try some yourself

Activity 15

The size of a population of micro-organisms doubles every hour. If there are two of these creatures to start with, how many will there be after five hours?


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6.7 What about alternatives to secession?

We have seen that in principle there are alternatives: cultural autonomy or a form of federalism. There are alternative ways to recognise 'national' identity apart from secession.

One conclusion to arise from this discussion of secession is that we are not cast adrift without any general principles or guidelines. We have also seen how the complexities of the real political world impinge upon poli
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6.4 Does one community seceding grant a similar right to others?

Consider the position of community C. If B secedes, it takes C with it into the new state. But does C then have the same right to secede from B? Consider the case of Quebec. Quebecois separatists have come very close to achieving the bare majority needed to achieve their goal. But if they gained the right to secede from Canada, would other groups who do not see themselves as a part of a francophone entity likewise have the right to a further independence vote for themselves? What about non-fr
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5.3 ‘A positive valorisation is assigned to one's own nation, granting it specific claims ove

Just how a nation is prioritised over other communities will have an important impact on how the terms of this second element are played out. A nation that sees itself in pluralistic or liberal terms for example – which may celebrate cultural diversity as part of its very sense of a collective identity – is, on the face of it, less likely to make particular demands or to institute extensive controls on the behaviour of its members. On the other hand, a nation that is imagined in terms of
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