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AUC Geographica (Acta Universitatis Carolinae Geographica) is a scholarly academic journal continuously published since 1966 that publishes research in the broadly defined field of geography: physical geography, geo-ecology, regional, social, political and economic geography, regional development, cartography, geoinformatics, demography and geo-demography.

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AUC GEOGRAPHICA, Vol 56 No 2 (2021), 144–156

Evolutionary trajectories of manufacturing firms in the rural Zlín Region of Czechia

Simona Šťastná, Adam Pavlík

published online: 13. 05. 2021


The aim of this article is to identify the most important mechanisms of rural industrial development in the context of a highly industrialized peripheral region in Central Europe. We ask if the development of rural manufacturing firms is primarily based on the activity and skills of local entrepreneurs, or whether it is driven by commercial counter-urbanization or cost-motivated inflow of (foreign direct) investment from other regions. Empirical results are based on the case study of the highly industrialized peripheral Zlín Region in Czechia. We have conducted 26 interviews with the company managers in rural municipalities of the Zlín Region. The growth of rural manufacturing firms is path-dependent, usually based on pre-existing economic activities or skills in the same or technologically related local industries. Neither commercial counter-urbanization nor inflow of foreign direct investment played a major role in the development of manufacturing firms in rural municipalities of the Zlín Region.

keywords: rural regions; manufacturing firms; restructuring; path development; firm births

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