Cet entretien a aussi été publié dans les CAHIERS N°6 (voir ICI)

This interview was also published in LES CAHIERS N°6 (see HERE)

INTERVIEW

with Harald BATHELT

Economic geographer, Professor, Canada Research Chair in Innovation and Governance Department of Political Science and Department of Geography and Planning University of Toronto and Zijiang Visiting Professor Institute of Urban Development at East China Normal University, Shanghai

 

Harald BATHELT has for many years written academic articles about trade shows and their importance for knowledge flows. His work is well-known among researchers who work in this field. In 2014, he published, with two other researchers, Francesca GOLFETTO and Diego RINALLO, a book entitled “Trade Shows in the Globalizing Knowledge Economy”, which could become a bedside book of all trade show organizers, but also for exhibitors and professional visitors. He develops the concept of the “temporary cluster” that can be an useful tool for trade shows strategists. And he has an attentive look at what is going on in Asia, particularly in China.

PANORAMA OF RESEARCH

Les Cahiers - Could you describe a panorama of your research on tradeshows and tell us why did you chose to work in that field?

I will be happy to talk about this. You are right: there are not so many people. Especially in my area, in economic geography, there are very few people. You will find people in industrial marketing, but they have a different focus, they look at different things.

Let me answer your question in two steps. First, how I got initially to think about trade shows, and then, more generally, about occasions where people from around the world get together to exchange knowledge for a short period and then they disappear, go back to where they are permanently based and use that knowledge to produce new products, and generate competitiveness.

I am an economic geographer and economic geographers typically try to understand why industries are located in certain regions, and how clusters develop. They are really interested in permanent settings of industries and how interactions between industries increase their competitiveness.

A natural focus of my work had been to look at clusters of industries, typically in city regions: how do specific structures, institutions develop, what are the links between, on the one hand, competing firms but also, on the other hand, between suppliers and users – how do they attempt to learn faster and become efficient?

There is a long traditional theorizing about this in economic geography, in regional economics and other fields. Explanations have focused primarily on material factors, such as costs, or what advantages it has for firms located in that area. But many empirical studies find that there are relatively few linkages between those firms located in clusters: they have global linkages much stronger than local ones. What does make it so advantageous for them to be located in a cluster region? With my colleagues Anders MALMBERG and Peter MASKELL and through long discussions, we came up to realize that knowledge is an important explanation to this. It is the type of knowledge flows that you achieve in a cluster, that occur on a day-to-day basis, for there is an automatic understanding. Of course, when you are based on a region and you have a set of related actors with a similar specialization, you can very quickly access the corresponding knowledge that you may explore . Yet, this is a limited knowledge space that exists here, and in order to be innovative and be successful, firms have to leave to other knowledge spaces and make connections. They have to create what we called global pipelines.

We conducted empirical studies and then stumbled across different questions. The next question we saw was to understand clusters from a different perspective, not in terms of how easy it is to make connections with local firms because you know them, but how firms go about when they create global pipelines? That is how we came to understand the role of trade shows.

Me and my co-authors all had conducted many interviews in clusters and firms always emphasized the role of trade fairs in connecting and finding information about other markets, maybe as a first step to look for new partners.

So we started to go to some trade shows, to talk to firms, and then we tried to theorize from our experience. When we look at the interactions at these events, there was very similar structure of interactions in terms of knowledge flows compared to those what we found in permanent clusters: there are different types of interactions. Between competing firms, mostly observations play a role, and not so much direct exchanges; but there are a lot of interactions with users and suppliers; there is also institution dimension related to the community that meets and gets together at these events. You have basically in a small spot the entire world represented like a microcosm of an industry, as one colleague called it.

“We were interested to see what kinds of interactions take place with different groups of actors and how knowledge was created.”

So, we really tried to understand how firms create linkages, why do they come, and how do they extract the knowledge they need. This was the beginning of my trade show research. We were interested to see what kinds of interactions take place with different groups of actors and how knowledge was created. We wanted to know to which events the firms went and have the clear idea of what they wanted to know, how they collected information, who they talked to, who they did not want to talk to, and so on. For me and a couple of PHD’s students who were very interested in this topic, we went step by step to explore such issues. Together with two colleagues who had also worked on clusters we conceptualized trade shows as a “temporary cluster” in kind of emphasizing the effects that these interactions have on pipeline building and permanent clusters.


 

Les Cahiers- Knowledge more important than actual business?

Yes, that was quite a different view from what industrial marketing folks gazed at. Because it is very difficult to do a representative study of visitors at trade shows, we concentrated on exhibitors. And the industrial marketing scholars who mostly work with surveys had a completely different focus: namely on market relations. So, they investigated these exhibitions, and basically looked at the forward flows toward the buyers: how did the exhibitors find the market? How would they best present their products? And how successful was that? This was only of minor interest for us because we wanted to see how these exhibitors retrieve information that is important for their production. So, we were looking backwards whereas industrial marketing was looking forwards. Both of us had a narrow perspective and we were really overlooking other things. 

“Because of the way how the trade show is organized, your strongest competitors are right beside you. And that provides opportunities for interactions that would not take place normally.”

Les Cahiers - What types of knowledge do the firms exchange or find at trade shows?

There is a huge amount of very different types of knowledge.

Of course, direct knowledge is generated about their own products. There is an old understanding based on Kenneth ARROWS from the 1960’s according to which firms will try to avoid to present new products or innovations at trade shows because others could steal that information very easily. That may be true to some degree – and it happens at trade shows all the time that people steal ideas: they take photographs of designs – and it is of course forbidden to take photographs but nobody cares about this. You can lose information, but at the same time firms can very effectively get a first reaction from the users about the new products and ideas they show. Therefore, this setting invites to experiment and present something new, as a kind of test what the reaction would be. And of course, your users want to visit you to see what is new, what are you doing, and so on.

A lot of the knowledge is about your own products and ideas that you try to correspond to your users. At the same time, you use these discussions to find out about their needs. You can do this of course in your day-to-day customer relations, but you do that once or twice a year. At the trade show, you get that kind of information from hundreds of potential users in a matter of a few days – this is very concentrated, very dense. And at the end of the few trade show days, you know exactly where you stand. That is an incredibly important finding.

 

Your product is one thing, but you also get to know about the products of your competitors. You see what are the trends in the market. The exhibitors, like the visitors, are also looking around and collecting information. They do not have only a few hours like the visitors, they have several days, and there are often enough people in their team. They wander around; they look what is available. They have things in mind of what they are looking for. They want to see how their suppliers and users are doing at the event. You do not have just one specialized type of product on the show, but you can find an entire value chain or a good part of a value chain that is showcased. Firms look particularly closely at their competitors. They often do that openly and because of the way how the trade show is organized, your strongest competitors are right beside you. And that provides opportunities for interactions that would not take place normally.

For instance, ten years ago, when I went to a trade fair on slaughtering machines, there was a large group of Australian producers of different machinery, all in one area of the show. I talked to two of them and I ask them about their competition and why they were there? Were they competing with all those many German machinery producers? They said: “No, we have no chance against them and in Europe nobody will buy our product, but at this event, we will meet our South American users. And when we go here, we are not in day-to-day competition with other Australian firms. We know these people, they are good guys, we have a beer with them, and we discuss what we think is going on in the field. We could never do that at home.” These are the kinds of the conversations that lead to incredible findings about these events.

Altogether, there are a lot of indirect knowledge flows that provide information about the larger picture of the industry and what is going on. You learn about your own products, your competitors’ products, about the industry trends, not just about your own innovations, but also about those of your competitors.

There is a fantastic paper, published about two years ago, by Michel CALLON, who develops a very strong argument about that the need for and process of how exhibitors find buyers as well as how the buyers find exhibitors they can trade with. This need from both ends serves to create enormous knowledge spill-overs. At the trade show it is a very difficult situation where potentially thousands of exhibitors (sellers) test tens of thousands of visitors (buyers). And in order to make sense of this complex market situation and come closer to a transaction or to future cooperation, firms at the event have to make very fast decisions and quickly narrow-down this enormous complexity to one-on-one relations where you can engage in more useful and specific interactions. 

“In order to make sense of this complex market situation and come closer to a transaction or to future cooperation, firms at the event have to make very fast decisions and quickly narrow-down this enormous complexity to one-on-one relations where you can engage in more useful and specific interactions.”

Trade shows are unique places where you can have at an incredibly fast pace very many brief conversations, where you have enough opportunities to describe the product and the past of your product and its production, and to find out about the users and how they attempt to use the product in the future. So very quickly you try to solve who fits with your need, who does not fit, how can your products serve these purposes or not, or to what extent do have to be changed in the future. In this sorting process, people receive a lot of information about what is going on. There are tremendous spill-overs across the industry in these conversations. And when you finally succeed with those partners, then you create a direct link and potentially come to begin some partnership or you meet later again and have a transaction later on. That is absolutely fascinating.

Les Cahiers - What are the links between your work and that one done by sociologists about interactions leading to innovation processes?

I think there is a close relation. Actually, Mark GRANOVETTER’s work drew me to looking at social relations and networks. One of my main books from the last twenty years has been strongly influenced by economic sociology; it is about the relational economy[1]: it suggests economic processes are always social processes. They contain social contents and durable relations. By engaging in better relations, firms can draw a lot of advantages: They can have faster access to knowledge; they find partners and markets easier and so on.

At these trade shows, firms do not just meet once. Of course, you meet a lot of different people, but you meet former partners also – over and over again. Over time, something like trust relationships developed between individuals, and because these individuals are often important representatives for their firms, then also between the firms. So, this is more of a sociological study than one would expect.

Les Cahiers – Do you know how is your work received by the professionals in the trade show business?

To be honest, not that much. My collaborators, Francesca GOLFETTO and Diego RINALLO, and others from industrial marketing, have a closer link to trade show organizers than I do. My link to organizers of trade shows, congresses or conferences is a more limited, but I do have some links. For example, I have an interesting link with people at the Toronto convention centre. I attended ten or so events where I conducted interviews over several days each time, but it never came into my mind to contact the organizers. I learnt through Diego RINALLO and Francesca GOLFETTO that it is quite important to do so to. Later in my research, I have done that as well.

But interestingly, the Toronto organizers came across my work through academics in Sydney, who I also do not know. They used my work as a basis to conduct a larger study of knowledge flows at the related events. The organizers were particularly interested in a knowledge perspective because they were looking for new arguments and different ways to portray such events.

Their original set of arguments was all valid: the advantages of cities hosting these events, the hospitality industry, what participants spend in the city, the industry that supports the trade business, and so on. But they realized that it would be really important to evaluate event in a broader way: focusing on the importance of knowledge flows created at these events. Colleagues in Sydney are still conducting a larger comparative study at a global scale. Overall, I now have a loose connection with Toronto convention centre. They send me materials, when they have plans, asking for some feedback, I shall do that. But this is the closest contact I have


[1] BATHELT H., GLÜCKLER J., The Relational Economy: Geographies of Knowing and Learning, Oxford University Press, 2015

THE BOOK “TRADE SHOWS IN THE GLOBALIZING KNOWLEDGE ECONOMY”

 

Les Cahiers - The book you wrote with Francesca GOLFETTO and Diego RINALLO, “Trade shows in the globalizing Knowledge Economy”, is the only book that provides a global overview about the trade show industry. And there is also a description of the main historical steps of trade fairs, what happened in the exhibition world since the 1970’s, but above all this analysis is about the interactions and the role of conversations during such events. Each organizer should read it and will think differently, I think. The professionals do not speak so much about conversation in their strategy.

Firms, of course, can also talk and interact like we do through Skype. But the sense of the conversation, the experience and delight of conversation…-- You see body language, you really understand what people are talking about, you cannot hide anything, you have other people listening in and looking, you observe that and you observe their reactions --this incredible experience, and all the social clues that you receive, is just so rich. It is such an efficient way to very quickly draw conclusions, make sense of new developments, see how you can benefit from them and maybe see what you should be changing. Such changes may not be revolutionary, but you know on which path you are as a firm and in which direction you should be going.

There were many attempts, some years ago, to create virtual trade shows, but many of these websites do not exist anymore and not much has happened. It just cannot replace that real experience of a trade show. You have a question, you got the right answer right away. You do not have to wait, you do not have an answering machine that tells you to leave a message, you can get your answer directly, and you have an answer which you can evaluate because it comes with information from the person who gives it to you. You can see whether a person is really convinced about the issue or not. This is an incredibly effective way to make sense. When the trade show is in a design-oriented industry, you see the new designs directly.

When it is about machinery, you may not see the tricks behind outside cover, but you see the set-up and you get an idea of what happens and talk to others who are also confronted with this novelty. It is quite fantastic what you can learn. Diego RINALLO told me that he went regularly to the Milano trade shows on textiles and fibres. Visitors will physically inspect the new products and they secretly put the fibres in the mouth to try to get an idea of what materials are inside. So, you can get lot of clues that you can take away from there.

Even in a world that takes climate change very seriously, probably in a world also where you have populism and where trade is no longer expanding -- and possibly decreasing in the future -- trade shows will remain crucial, because essentially that is the way how you get new ideas that you do not have in your own locality.

Les Cahiers – You speak in your book about the notion of pipelines. Professionals often have a clear vison of territories, but they do not think much about the “routes” between trade shows.  Sociologists work on the relations between the participants from one trade show to another when they say to each other “see you there“ or “see you next time”, but professionals do not think a lot about that. They know how to reproduce a trade show from Germany in China but they do not really theorize on what is the routes that connect these events throughout the world. Pipelines is a better way to think about the relations between trade shows.

There is some interesting work in industrial marketing on such issues. Diego RINALLO and Francesca GOLFETTO are at the lead of this work. They have looked at the trade show cycle, annual or biannual cycles. Individual organizers do not worry about that so much. What they worry about is of course the timing, when they set their event in relation to other events.

“Climate change is real (…). But I think also knowledge flows will have to stay global and these events may become even more important, because they could be one of the few opportunities left for truly global exchanges.”

In history there were interesting clashes: for example, with the book fair in Germany. Originally, there was competition between the Leipzig book fair and the Frankfurt book fair. At one point, Frankfurt was just a more open city and they put the date of the two events so close of each other that firms had to decide to go either here or there. And firms went to Frankfurt – this was basically the beginning of the end of Leipzig’s book Fair, . There is often competition between organizers – even if not all organizers may notice this. We discuss numerous cases in our book. And sometimes organizers use strategies to try to push out their competitors, another trade show. 

 

But I think also looking forward: Climate change is real threat and it seems we have not even started to get serious about what we need to do. So, I think we will see a lot more of local production, local flows in the future. But I think also knowledge flows will have to stay global and these events may become even more important, because they could be one of the few opportunities left for truly global exchanges. Individual firms will have fewer opportunities than they may have now: as a consequence of that there will have to be more planning on how these events fit with one another in the future. Maybe you will have very global events, but these big events will have to coordinated as they become less competitive, but more complementary.

The point is that especially when you want to learn about other markets and how things are being used differently, then you learn most about this when you go to a trade show in a different country or in a different continent. Exhibitors may have to be more mobile, while traveling less often, in going to events than visitors. But these are preliminary ideas: there needs to be some strategic thinking on how the future of that industry could look like.

CHINA

 

Les Cahiers - We could speak now about your work on Chinese trade shows. Today if we want to know more about what is happening in China, we can read your articles[1] which are among the few about it. What is your experience of Chinese trade shows?

“It is absolutely fascinating to look at the speed and the dynamics of that industry and events in China and how they changed.”

When I started to work on trade shows in China, I had already a research agenda about economic development in the country, particularly in the Shanghai region. I tried to read broadly about trade shows in other countries, in other continents, and literature on Chinese trade shows was relatively poor and it seemed to be focused on the idea that trade shows in the country are very old, outdated, ineffective events. They were planned but that organizers did not really know what they were doing and that attendees are not very pleased with it. 

 

With this in mind, I went to a number of events and I conducted interviews in a similar way as I did in Europe and in North America. I was shocked because these events were very modern, very well organized – not at all what I expected. They served similar functions, there were differences depending on the event that I looked at, but it is absolutely fascinating to look at the speed and the dynamics of that industry and events in China and how they changed.

Originally, large cities received a small trade show hall in China – centrally planned. And they had all the same style, the same Russian architecture. They all looked the same, nice small buildings, and the idea was to show off that China was able to accomplish industrial development. But with the opening policy in China, and the experience of the Canton Fair –the Canton Fair has been so central to the development of the trade show business and international trade in China -- and since Chinese cites and the economy grew so fast, very quickly trade shows and exhibition centres were established in many cities, and one bigger than the other.

The new exhibition centres in Shanghai are incredible. They first established the new Shanghai exhibition centre in Pudong, which is, maybe not quite as big, as Frankfurt. It is a big area made up of different halls[2] but, just few years later, they started building another centre at the inner-city airport Hongqiao[3]. That is by far the largest centre, twice as big as Pudong, unless China is building some other even larger centre elsewhere right now.

The organizers filled these centres with a large number of events. There are many international events because international firms interested in accessing the Chinese market and presenting their products to Chinese customers. There is an incredible dynamic, with a lot of learning going on.

Sometimes you find even that Chinese firms try to make use of these events quite systematically. They go around with questionnaires, for example, to all their suppliers who also attend the event and acquire information. I have not heard in a trade show, let’s say in US or in Germany, that this happens. Other learning processes are similar to those that you would also see at the trade shows in Germany.

I aimed at one point several years, when I had explored Chinese events, to more systematically look at differences between countries. There are differences between events, but you have to look very closely. If you just go in and look around, of course, everything is similar. There are the exhibitors, there are the visitors, there are similar conversations. But when you look at the scope of products and the innovativeness and the type of interactions that take place, you find differences.

“It was fascinating to recognize that there is not only the story of the individual event but that the events are linked to different political economies and support a country’s global positioning overall.”

But to go one step further, we wanted to understand systematic differences of how trade shows operate in different countries. So, I looked particularly at the Asia-Pacific region with my Shanghai collaborators and friends. We organized a workshop in Shanghai with about 30 academics, all invited, from different countries in Asia, Europe and North America, all trade show researchers, no audience, except for the president of one trade fair association – UFI -- who happened to be a Chinese and was in Shanghai at that time. 

 

We looked at the trade show business in Japan, Korea, Taiwan, China, Australia, and we discussed events in these countries and underlying politics. What we found is that obviously it depends always on the industry that we looked at and that we compared. But beyond that what is really interesting is that the development stage of the national economy, the national policy agenda had a huge impact of how trade shows developed, how they were utilized for developmental goals and what role they played in the economy.

In Taiwan for instance, the national challenge was to generate close international linkages to have a strong base for economic development in a situation where the country was threatened by China. Thus, trade shows became a very important instrument to kind of show the independence and the strength of Taiwan as a country and its economy. In Korea, it was very much about creating export markets and enabling small and medium sized firms to also internationalize. In China, these events were drivers of industrialization in the country. And in Japan, these events helped to create networks between firms. Here, these events were very much used to create networks within Japan to strengthen industry collaboration. It was fascinating to recognize that there is not only the story of the individual event but that they are linked to different political economies and support a country’s global positioning overall.


[1] In the media, the Trade Faire International Magazine is probably the most attentive to the China exhibition market: http://www.trade-fairs-international.com/tfi-en/

[2] 200 000 m² indoor, Shanghai New International Exhibition Centre, www.sniec.net

[3] Shanghai National Exhibition & Convention Centre (necc), 400 000 m² indoor

Les Cahiers - What have Chinese people understood about trade shows that Europeans have forgotten?

I have a great story that gives some hints: it is just a case, how fast a country and its firms develop. The most fascinating event that I have been to in the past twenty years has been the Canton Fair in southern China, because it is a mythical event. If you would be able to find a person from Europe or North America who was a representative of a European or North American firm at the Canton Fair in the 1970s, you could get truly fascinating insights. I wish I would know such a person and could conduct an interview, because at that time China was a closed economy.

There was only an extremely small limited number of visitors and hardly anybody was allowed to get in. However, the Canton fair was officially pushed because it was successful and broad, and it was used as a testing ground to define the institutional basis for creating a trade fair industry in the country. And it was an important way of how foreign firms were brought to China.

So, I believe in mid-1970s, the Canton Fair was responsible for almost 50% of Chinese exports overall – that is gigantic. It has grown much bigger since then in absolute numbers: I assume it is the largest trade fair in the world, twice a year, with roughly 200 000 visitors, 25 000 exhibitors, over a period of 3 weeks.  There is a huge exhibition centre, exclusively built for this event. In former times, this is where businessmen would go get to know anything about China and its economy. Since the country was basically closed, this must have been an incredible experience to understand how people were thinking and what was going on. 

“It was an incredible attempt to get away from one-off sales routines with all their uncertainties and instead creating a close relationship that leads to longer-term market linkages and productions relations.”

 

When I went, I wanted to see how the event had changed. And my expectation was to find a real market, like a neoclassical market, with negotiations about prices and products being sold at a massive scale – with little complex learning. So, I went with one student from Shanghai, Yiwen ZHU, who is now professor in Shanghai, to do this research on the link between trade shows, markets and production activity. A second student, who came with me, Pengfei LI, is now a scholar at HEC Montreal. He is also Chinese and we work closely together on China-Canada business linkages. We conducted interviews in Chinese, German and English, trying to investigate the market linkages at these events.

And what we found was completely surprising. We expected a lot of anonymous one-off market exchanges, but only in a minority of firms that we interviewed said that this played a role. In this event, you have to keep in mind that you basically have Chinese exhibitors, with few exceptions, and only foreign buyers. You have one hundred percent foreign buyers, even if many of those are ethnic Chinese -- they represent foreign firms. It sounds like a gigantic export market. What we found is that Chinese exhibitors used very smart strategies to find buyers, but not only to sell their products, but to engage them in longer-term relationship and longer-term linkages.

Let me give you one example because I have never seen anything like this on a trade show in Europe -- maybe just because I have not heard this, but this is really smart. We only observed this by accident and we only noticed after the trade show what had happened. We later called the firm and also identified another case. But with such successful practice, you can imagine that multiplies very quickly.

What we saw was a textile and shoe firm and we observed how they were dealing with buyers who came by and looked at the exhibits. They would show their products, the buyers had questions, they wanted to see all the shoes that were there. They had a large variety of designs. The buyers wanted to make sure that this firm was not trader, but a producer. In the earlier events, there were a lot of traders who were representing producers and a lot of problems resulted from this, because they were making promised and gave product descriptions, but these did not fulfil the expectations they had created.

The buyers were not really interested in these products but they wanted to judge the capability of the firm. They had their own product designs they wanted to have produced, so they just wanted to see whether the exhibitor was able to produce such products and to customize what production according to specific wishes. So, they would chat a bit and the exhibitor would say: “Well, we will try, we will talk to our production and we will get back to you and let you know what we can do and how we can plan this.” At home, at the production plant, everybody was prepared and waiting. The production plant was ready to work through the entire night. So at night, they came with designs; with changes, with adjustments, took photographs, prepare a document of how they would do this, and send this back to the exhibitor at Canton Fair, and the exhibitor would send it by email to the buyer from the day before. And before that person would get up the next morning and have breakfast, they would have an answer and would be ready to come back during the day.

It was an enormous commitment by the exhibitor with the intention to create a longer-term link. This would not lead to immediate sales during the event. The buyers want to make sure that the exhibitors, the producers, would really be able to do this. They wanted to see the production plant. They would set up a date and go and visit the production plant sometimes later, and then they would start really negotiations. So, it was not an anonymous transaction, but created linkages over the next two years or so in production. It was an incredible attempt to get away from one-off sales routines with all their uncertainties and instead creating a close relationship that leads to longer-term market linkages and productions relations.

Les Cahiers- A last question, how can you engage more researchers to work on trade shows?

This is a good question. There is a real need for empirical works. I have done some studies but it is often with small samples, individual events, so these needs have a broader basis to become more robust in terms of the findings and to also have a better conceptualization and understanding of these events. Because, as always, when you have more and better empirical results, you have to revise and improve your understandings. The entire industry is very dynamic, especially with the shifts in global trade that we are witnessing and in the future with climate change. I have to convince people to do some research but I am not a prophet.

Les Cahiers- I am astonished that such a little industry is so important and how politics forgot how important it is and to not pay more attention to trade shows.

This is true – many politicians do not realize the importance of certain trade shows and exhibition place. In many industries, when you look at industrial production, when you take a closer look, there are may be one or two or few more places of exhibition activity in the world and without these two places functioning, many things in the industry, the development of new technologies and the transfer of ideas would simply not be possible. Trade shows, there role is actually incredible: you can easily overlook them as only last a few days, but these events are the glue of entire industries n

 

Contact: harald.bathelt@utoronto.ca

Brief bibliography

A lot of Harald Bathelt’s work and collaborations are easily accessible through www.spaces-online.com and on http://www.harald-bathelt.com/

Bathelt, H. (2011), ‘International trade fairs and world cities: Temporary vs. permanent clusters’, in Taylor, P., Derudder, B., Hoyler, M. and Witlox, F. (eds), International Handbook of Globalization and World Cities, Cheltenham, Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar, 177-188.

Bathelt, H. (2017), ‘Trade fairs and innovation’, in Bathelt, H., Cohendet, P., Henn, S. and Simon, L. (eds), The Elgar Companion to Innovation and Knowledge Creation, Cheltenham, Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar, 509-521.

Bathelt, H. (2019), Theorizing Temporary Proximity, Temporary Clusters and Temporary Markets, SPACES online, 2019-01. Toronto, Heidelberg: www.spaces-online.com.

Bathelt, H. and Gibson, R. (2015), ‘Learning in “organized anarchies”: The nature of technological search processes and knowledge flows at international trade fairs’, Regional Studies, 49, 985-1002.

Bathelt H., Golfetto F. and Rinallo D. (2014), Trade Shows in the Globalizing Knowledge Economy, Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Bathelt, H., Li, P. and Zhu, Y.-W. (2017), ‘Geographies of temporary markets: An anatomy of the Canton Fair’, European Planning Studies, 25, 1497-1515.

Bathelt, H., Malmberg, A. and Maskell, P. (2004), ‘Clusters and knowledge: Local buzz, global pipelines and the process of knowledge creation’, Progress in Human Geography, 28, 31-56.

Bathelt, H. and Schuldt, N. (2010), ‘International trade fairs and global buzz - Part I: Ecology of global buzz’, European Planning Studies, 18, 1957-1974.

Bathelt, H. and Turi, P. (2011), ‘Local, global and virtual buzz: The importance of face-toface contact and possibilities to go beyond’, Geoforum, 42, 520-529

BATHELT H., GLÜCKLER J., The Relational Economy: Geographies of Knowing and Learning, Oxford University Press, 2015

Li, P. (2015), ‘Temporary clustering in developing economies: Trade fairs in South and Southeast Asia’, in Bathelt, H. and Zeng, G. (eds), Temporary Knowledge Ecologies: The Rise and Evolution of Trade Fairs in the Asia-Pacific Region, Cheltenham, Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar, 93-112.

Li, P. and Bathelt, H. (2017), ‘From temporary market to temporary cluster: Evolution of the Canton Fair’, Area Development and Policy, 2, 154-172.

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