A Bridge over Troubled Water: A Structural Political Economy of Vertical Integration

Cardinale, Ivano. 2018. A Bridge over Troubled Water: A Structural Political Economy of Vertical Integration. Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, 46, pp. 172-179. ISSN 0954-349X [Article]

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Abstract or Description

This article proposes a new interpretation of the logical process of vertical integration, exploring its socio-political dimension. The first step is to show that models of industrial interdependencies (in the Leontief and Sraffa formulations) and vertically integrated models (in the Pasinetti formulation) imply profoundly different views on production, distribution, and socio-political conflict. The next step is to focus on the process of vertical integration in itself: on its being a ‘bridge’ between such different views. Because analytically equivalent representations of production have such different socio-political implications, economic structures cannot be seen as univocally determining economic interests or conflicts in society. This results opens up a new field for structural analysis: studying how the formation of interests in society is influenced, but not determined, by economic structures. The argument suggests a route to address the socio-political dimension of economic structures, which is largely left on the background by structural economic analysis.

Item Type:


Identification Number (DOI):



Structural Political Economy, Structural economic analysis, Economic interests, Vertical integration, Input-output analysis

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Institute of Management Studies
Institute of Management Studies > Structural Economic Analysis


28 May 2018Accepted
30 May 2018Published Online
September 2018Published

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

30 May 2018 13:56

Last Modified:

19 Feb 2024 16:40

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.



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