Global production network dis/articulations in Zanzibar: Practices and conjunctures of exclusionary development in the tourism industry
Recent assessments of economic geographers' work on global production stress the need for improved understandings of the immanent, structural and contingent drivers of disarticulations - uneven and exclusionary development outcomes that often occur when places become connected to global production networks (GPN). Some argue that a productive approach is to view the places or regions linked to GPN as 'conjunctures' of context-specific and multi-scalar processes, social formations, power relations, histories and structures that shape the quality of GPN couplings and help to produce disarticulations. This article argues that an epistemological focus on the practices of firms connected to GPN can yield insights into industry-specific processes (e.g. value creation, upgrading) and region- or place-specific conjunctural factors that produce disarticulations. The approach is elaborated on and applied illustratively to the case of Zanzibar's (Tanzania) tourism industry, a sector that has grown rapidly but in a manner that has excluded many of the archipelago's residents from the benefits of increasing integration into GPN. The practices of Zanzibari enterprises and foreign-owned resorts show how local enterprises are increasingly marginal in tourism GPN, while large-scale resorts and non-local firms capture and subsequently offshore much of the value generated by the industry. A qualitative analysis of these practices highlights how they are shaped in part by the conjuncture of several structural factors and processes - political, economic, racial and technological - that help to produce disarticulations in Zanzibar.
Journal of Economic Geography
conjuncture, disarticulation, F00, F23, Global production networks, L14, practice, tourism, Zanzibar
Murphy, James T., "Global production network dis/articulations in Zanzibar: Practices and conjunctures of exclusionary development in the tourism industry" (2019). Geography. 389.