Week 3 Reading Response
1. The differences between a generalist newspaper publisher and a specialist newspaper publisher.
There are some differences between a generalist newspaper and a specialist newspaper publisher in the newspaper publishing industry. The generalist newspaper publishers entail the large newspaper entities which are locally diversified. They are involved in various activities and programs within the society which help them in gaining a significant market share. Even though they publish one paper, the generalist newspaper publisher details numerous subsections which are focused on a specific sub-market (Carroll 1271). Compared to the specialized newspaper publishers, the generalist newspaper publishers have their supply units, production and manufacturing facilities.
Unlike the generalist newspaper publishers, the specialist newspapers define the small newspaper organizations. They usually publish for a specific segment of an audience of a particular region such as professional community. They are also specialized vertically. Carroll (1985) identifies that the patterns of newspaper growth and failure operate to deliver an observed degree of concentration. However, focusing on the failure patterns of the dailies could be misleading. In addition, the specialized are also unlikely to have large distribution networks and production facilities. The actual readership of the general newspaper is larger than that of the specialized newspapers. However, when a specialist newspaper has a higher amount of actual readers than its generalist competitor, it could be because of the disproportionate distribution of resources along the various environmental dimensions suitable to the specialist newspaper. Thus, a generalist could be smaller than the generalist newspaper due to the inability of competition to transform fundamentally to all the niches.
Another difference between the two newspapers publisher can be examined from the niche width. The width of a niche evaluates the degree of environmental dimensions whereby the population exists. The generalist newspaper publishers depend on the various environmental resources for their survival (Carroll 1270). On the other hand, the specialized newspaper publishers depend on specific environmental conditions. For example, the ethnic newspapers are specialist as they are drawn from a specific subpopulation. The generalists’ publishers also compete in different domains simultaneously while the specialists can only compete on limited few. Thus, the specialist organizations are observed to be smaller than the generalists.
2. How can you apply these ideas of generalists and specialists to the microbrewery movement in the beer industry?
I can apply ideas of generalists and specialists to the microbrewery movement in the beer industry through advocating for the development of specialized beer firms. The small specialized beer firms will only focus on specific groups of people in the markets. On the other hand, the generalists will be left to produce beer products for the diversified markets. The microbrewery movement in the beer industry is seeking to develop small beer firms which target a small segment of the overall market (Carroll & Swaminathan 743). Thus, understanding the ideas of generalists and the specialists gives me the knowledge to create beer products which target the narrow market segment.
It is clear that the larger generalists have the power to outshine the smaller firms. It is important to provide abundant resources for all organizations including the specialized beer firms which will support the growth of the specialists. Without adequate resources, only the large generalists will be able to survive in the beer industry killing the progress of the microbrewing movement in the market. The ideas will also assist in the overall analyzing of the market environment to understand the access of the generalists and the specialists separately. The microbrewing movement needs the support the generalists who have the competitive edge and power of resources. As a result, the concepts will be influential in the allocation of environmental space and resources to the different firms to succeed in the overall beer industry.
Rise in Specialist Producers in the Beer Industry
The reason for the rise of specialized firms in the brewing industry is the resource space which lies external from the generalist target regions. The location of the specialized firms away from competition makes it possible for the specialized firms to get viable regions. The viable market regions have made it possible for the specialized firms to forms to grow without any competition from the generalist firms. It is because they depend on then different resources.
Also, the access to sufficient resources has made it possible for the specialist market segment to grow effectively without any major competition from the generalists. Based on the resource partitioning theory, it explains that the increase in the space for resources creates a favorable environment for the growth of the specialist organizations (Carroll and Swaminathan 718). Therefore, the rise in the specialist producers in the beer industry has been made possible to access to adequate resources among the small brewers.
Carroll, Glenn R. “Concentration and specialization: Dynamics of niche width in populations of organizations.” American journal of sociology (1985): 1262-1283.
Carroll, Glenn R., and Anand Swaminathan. “Why the Microbrewery Movement? Organizational Dynamics of Resource Partitioning in the US Brewing Industry1.” American Journal of Sociology 106.3 (2000): 715-762.