Industrialisation or industrialization is the period of social and economic change that transforms a human group from an agrarian society into an industrial one, involving the extensive re-organisation of an economy for the purpose of manufacturing.
As industrial workers' incomes rise, markets for consumer goods and services of all kinds tend to expand and provide a further stimulus to industrial investment and economic growth.
The first transformation to an industrial economy from an agricultural one, known as the Industrial Revolution, took place from the mid-18th to early 19th century in certain areas in Europe and North America; starting in Great Britain, followed by Belgium, Germany, and France. Characteristics of this early industrialisation were technological progress, a shift from rural work to industrial labor, financial investments in new industrial structure, and early developments in class consciousness and theories related to this. Later commentators have called this the First Industrial Revolution.
The "Second Industrial Revolution" labels the later changes that came about in the mid-19th century after the refinement of the steam engine, the invention of the internal combustion engine, the harnessing of electricity and the construction of canals, railways and electric-power lines. The invention of the assembly line gave this phase a boost. Coal mines, steelworks, and textile factories replaced homes as the place of work.
By the end of the 20th century, East Asia had become one of the most recently industrialised regions of the world. The BRICS states (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) are undergoing the process of industrialisation.
There is considerable literature on the factors facilitating industrial modernisation and enterprise development.
The concentration of labour into factories has increased urbanisation and the size of settlements, to serve and house the factory workers.
Workers have to either leave their families or bring them along in order to work in the towns and cities where these industries are found.
Changes in family structure
The family structure changes with industrialisation. The sociologist Talcott Parsons noted that in pre-industrial societies there is an extended family structure spanning many generations who probably remained in the same location for generations. In industrialised societies the nuclear family, consisting of only parents and their growing children, predominates. Families and children reaching adulthood are more mobile and tend to relocate to where jobs exist. Extended family bonds become more tenuous.
Currently the "international development community" (World Bank, Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD), many United Nations departments, and some other organisations) endorses development policies like water purification or primary education and Co-Operation amongst third world communities. Some members of the Economic communities do not consider contemporary industrialisation policies as being adequate to the global south (Third World countries) or beneficial in the longer term, with the perception that it could only create inefficient local industries unable to compete in the free-trade dominated political order which it has created.
The relationships among economic growth, employment, and poverty reduction are complex. Higher productivity is argued to be leading to lower employment (see jobless recovery). There are differences across sectors, whereby manufacturing is less able than the tertiary sector to accommodate both increased productivity and employment opportunities; more than 40% of the world's employees are "working poor", whose incomes fail to keep themselves and their families above the $2-a-day poverty line. There is also a phenomenon of deindustrialisation, as in the former USSR countries' transition to market economies, and the agriculture sector is often the key sector in absorbing the resultant unemployment.