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Characterization Of Technological Change In The Shipping Industry, 1350–1800

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Chapter Summary

The present chapter includes contributions to understanding of the nature, the sources and effects of technological change on the European shipping industry between the fourteenth and the nineteenth centuries. Most of the contributions included in the volume have been presented in the form of narratives. There are two different ways in which peace directly led to shipping productivity growth. First, peace had positive effects on ship-technological change in the shipping productivity by saving unnecessary resources spent in defence. Second, peace in a given trade could result in a more efficient merchant marine dominating the trade. Finally, an important and neglected angle on the role of war is that it does not have only negative effects on shipping productivity. In sum the framework provides a way to think about technological change in the shipping industry which integrates many of the existing explanations.

Keywords: merchant marine; nineteenth centuries; shipping industry; shipping productivity; technological change



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