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Trademarks and British in dominance in consumer goods, 1876-1914

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle



Publication details

JournalEconomic History Review
DateE-pub ahead of print - 13 May 2014
DatePublished (current) - 2014
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)793–817
Early online date13/05/14
Original languageEnglish


Late Victorian Britain was very important in the development of British dominance in light consumer goods industries, such as fermented liquors and spirits; detergents and perfumery; bicycles and other carriages; paper, stationery, and bookbinding; and games of all kinds and sports goods. Firms developed technology‐based innovations and marketing‐based innovations, creating abnormal peaks of trademark registrations in certain industries. This article investigates those peaks and shows that factors usually pointed out as explaining British economic decline in heavy industries did not impact on the development of light consumer goods industries, and on the contrary encouraged their fast growth during this period. Trademark registrations are shown to provide new insights into the debate on British relative decline, when combined with other industry and firm‐level data.

    Research areas

  • Trademarks and British competitiveness in consumer goods 1876 - 1914, Business History Review

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