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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Planning Change in African Urban Food Retailing Institutions: A Liberian Perspective
Author:Handwerker, W. Penn
Year:1978
Periodical:Liberian Studies Journal
Volume:8
Issue:2
Pages:133-143
Language:English
Geographic term:Liberia
Subjects:market
marketplaces
food
Economics and Trade
Development and Technology
Abstract:Whereas the role of agricultural change in economic development is clearly delineated, the role of marketing change frequently is obscure, and the role of market-place distribution especially ambiguous. Characteristically, market placers appear simply to be crude agglomerations of equipment and haphazardly organised personennel, while the apparent intensity and atomistic quality of competition suggests that there are stringent limits on capital accumulation and firm growth that actually impede development. From this perspective, urban planners might be well-advised to encourage the growth of supermarkets or other types of fixed-premium firms and the elimination of the daily markets from which most food purchases currently are made. By demonstrating that the limitations to food retailing development stem not from competition among firms but from the demand factors to which they must cater, in particular the discretionary incomes of consumers and the demand for personalised economic ties with retailers, data from Monrovia, Liberia, suggest both the conditions under which such changes in retail structure can or cannot be efficiently accomplished, and an economic indicator of when in particular cases such change might be successful. Fig., notes.
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