Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Joachim Singelmann


This dissertation postulates that the trend of increasing globalization of economic activities within the shifting features of the world economy has been the dominating force transforming and integrating the international economic structure. I adopt ecological theory's external view of system structure, and focus on a more relational view of international exchange. Using network methodology, I analyze the effects of global transactional interactions on economic growth. This research extends concepts of the macro-urban approach to an analysis of international transactions. Based on data for 93 nations over a 20-year period (1970-1978 and 1978-1990) from three transactional networks (93 x 93 matrices), major effects of international trade, capital, and labor flows on global economic structure and growth are carefully examined. Results indicate that economic interdependencies developed in terms of network positions and changes in the network centralities have been pivotal determinants in reorganizing international economies and creating competitive advantages for economic growth for countries centrally located in the global production networks. Applying difference-of-logs (growth rate) models, the results present robust positive effects of transactional networks on economic growth net of four groups of alternatively hypothesized determinants (dependence, industrialization, human capital investment, and military expenditure). The results indicate that increased transactional linkages with the international economy have been beneficial rather than harmful to economic growth. I conclude that structural position in external transaction networks has been the critical factor affecting growth and transformation in the world economy.