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Who's who in global value chains? A weighted network approach

Franco Ruzzenenti
Rossana Mastrandrea
Publication Year 
JEL Code 
C67 - Input-Output Models
D85 - Network Formation
F14 - Country and Industry Studies of Trade
F15 - Economic Integration
This paper represents global value chains (GVCs) as weighted networks of foreign value added in exports, which allows for the identification of the specific roles of countries and for the quantification of their relative importance over time. A major structural change occurred in the beginning of the century as GVCs steadily turned into global networks, amid an unprecedented growth of value-added flows and the rise of China as a major player. First-order network metrics highlight the vital but also distinct roles of Germany, the US, China and Japan in the international organisation of production. Germany is very relevant both as a user and as a supplier of foreign inputs, while the US acts mostly as a supplier of value added to other countries. Second-order properties of networks shed light on the complex architecture of GVCs, notably in terms of cyclical triangular relationships. Germany's GVCs mostly root in direct relationships, while Japanese ones typically involve more than two countries.
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