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Characteristics of Early and Late Industrialization

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This is the process or revolution that involves change in social and economic status of the ordinary and fundamentally less technologically endowed society to a society that is depended on technology for production (Majid, 2004).

Industrialization is a process that has been there since time immemorial.  However, early industrialization has evolved and grown, adapting various characteristics. This has resulted to quite a different nature of industrialization, which is in existent in modern world. This industrialization is legally termed as late industrialization.

There are different characteristics that characterize early and modern industrialization.  In the first place, early industrialization was characterized by much concentration on use of metallurgy.  Metals like iron and steel were highly used in industries to in manufacture of industrial machines, because they were believed to be resistant to corrosion and rusting.  Early industrialization did not also experience a lot of technological innovations since there were no much thoughts invested in the industrial sector like research until when growth of the industries was considered a crucial thing.

This lack of adequate technology led to child labour whereby children were used to give in industrial production.  A lot of water and air pollution was experienced during early industrialization.  This was because all industrial wastes were drained on water masses and chimneys directly led smoke from the industries into the atmosphere.  Health problems were very much prominent during this era of early industrial growth.  These included substance abuse, poor nutrition, noise, isolation and homelessness.  Increased trade and comers also characterized early industrialization.  This was mostly realized by concentrating in the agricultural sector.

Early industrialization was also characterized by the fact that if concentrated on local and reformed markets.  Transportation network and communication networks were like telegraphs and telephones were poorly developed hence this local and regional market concentration.

Early industrialization was also characterized by significant growth of towns and cities as well as changing the lifestyles of the people in late industrialization, many characteristics and experienced.  Late industrialization is first characterized by increasing technological innovations where child labor and man power are supplemented.  There is also high growth of cities towns and cities, coupled with growth of large enterprises.  Specialization is also being evident in all areas of economic activity.

Late industrialization is also characterized by the fact that is stretching its markets to cover the whole world, no longer local and regional markets only.  There is also prominent growth in transportation network where railroads and electric railways are involved.  Communication network has also grown on the same line, involving telephones, telegraphs and telefax.  There are still health problems that are associated with late industrialization.  These include noise, substance abuse, dangerous machinery and water pollution.

In late industrialization, a lot of concern is given and investment is practiced in terms of capital so as to expand production.  Iron and steel metals have steel remained central to the development of many industries through many other metals have been invented like aluminium, silver and platinum.  Late industrialization has led to rise of other industrial sectors like the tourism sector.

Therefore it is worthy to conclude that, industrialization has contributed to the status of the society as we know it today. If it were not for early industrialization, the achievements in health and all social and economic sectors would not have been realized. Besides that, both early and late industrialization correlate to each other and therefore both can be termed as crucial and necessary to the better adaptation of the human being into the environment.


Majid, H. (2004). The history of Industrialization. Macmillan Publishing Company. London.

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