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North Carolina in the Connected AgeChallenges and Opportunities in a Globalizing Economy$
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Michael L. Walden

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780807832219

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: July 2014

DOI: 10.5149/9780807888742_walden

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. The Macroeconomics of Change

. The Macroeconomics of Change

Forces Transforming North Carolina's Economy

(p.21) 2. The Macroeconomics of Change
North Carolina in the Connected Age

Michael L. Walden

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter argues that few states have been impacted as much by the Connected Age as North Carolina. North Carolina's twentieth-century economy was built largely on the availability of plentiful low-cost labor. The dramatic opening of world markets and the ability to manage production over wide geographic areas with modern communications and transportation mean that low-cost labor no longer needs to be located in North Carolina or the United States but can be located in China, India, and Eastern Europe. The chapter tells a story of both endings and beginnings—an ending to North Carolina's traditional twentieth-century economy and a beginning to the new Connected Age economy. It tracks broad changes in the state economy and compares them to those at the national level. The chapter documents how North Carolina reacted to the key trends of the Connected Age and shows how these reactions contributed to contractions in traditional industries as well as expansion in new industries.

Keywords:   Connected Age, North Carolina, low-cost labor, modern communications, traditional industries

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