GEOG 597i
Critical Geospatial Thinking and Applications


Have you ever wondered why Detroit came to be the center of automobile manufacturing in the United States, why Pittsburg is known for steel production, and why Hollywood became the entertainment capital of the world? In the early years of the twentieth century, when cars were assembled by hand, and when many of their components were made of wood, automobile manufacturers were located in many different places. One brand of car was made in San Francisco, another was made in Massachusetts, and yet another was made in Indiana. By the end of World War I, Detroit was becoming the center of automobile production in America. In the early days of silent films, Flagstaff, Arizona was the site for the production of several movies, because many of the early films were about life in the West. Within a few years, however, the film industry had abandoned Flagstaff in favor of the Los Angeles Basin of California. In colonial times, the steel production center of North America was in Massachusetts. During the last half of the 19th century, Pittsburg, Pennsylvania replaced Massachusetts as the steel center of America. Why did these changes take place? The content of this lesson will help you answer such questions. Of course, there are a number of variables that determine whether or not a manufacturer will prosper, including management, capital, current economic conditions, and government regulations. Location, however, is among the most important of these. This lesson focuses on basic industrial location theory, and the tools of spatial analysis that explain the nature of industrial land uses and industrial landscapes.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this lesson, the successful participant will be able to:

  • describe the contributions of Adam Smith and David Ricardo to economic theory;
  • contrast and compare mercantilism, capitalism, and communism;
  • demonstrate comprehension of the nature of Keynesian economic;
  • define and describe supply and demand, transferability, intervening opportunities, elasticity of demand, internal efficiencies, bulk purchase, horizontal and vertical integration, agglomeration, and covariance;
  • demonstrate comprehension of Alfred Weber's model of industrial location theory;
  • describe the contributions of E.M. Hoover and D.M. Smith;
  • demonstrate comprehension of the importance of cost advantage;
  • describe the nature of a zone of indifference; and
  • demonstrate comprehension of the ways in which cyber geography is changing industrial location theory.

What is due for Lesson 7?

This lesson requires one week to complete. Please refer to the Course Syllabus for specific time frames and due dates. Specific directions for the assignment below can be found within this lesson.

Lesson 7: Assignments
Requirements Lesson 7 Assignment Details
To Do Familiarize yourself with all the Lesson 7 Materials.

Ambler, Adams and Gould, Chapter 9; pp. 236-339.

Assignment Complete Assignments.


If you have any questions, please post them to our Questions? discussion forum (not e-mail), located in the Orientation and General Information Module in Canvas. I will check that discussion forum daily to respond. While you are there, feel free to post your own responses if you, too, are able to help out a classmate.