In this study, the potential of specific-sector clustering and the relevant decision-making criteria are identified for 10 provinces of Turkey based on the clustering approach and using the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) and through one-to-one interviews and surveys administered on 2,327 firms active in the textile and apparel sector. When identifying this potential, the clustering tendencies of companies with input-output relations and included in the value chain were also used in addition to survey data. At the end of the study, according to the data obtained through the AHP and the surveys held in 10 provinces, two provinces came to fore, meeting the highest number of criteria in terms of clustering potential. These are the provinces of Istanbul and Gaziantep. The provinces of Izmir and Bursa were identified as being closer to having a clustering potential compared to other provinces. In addition, it is expected that this study will make a significant contribution to literature as this study uses the AHP method for the first time in identifying the potential of clustering.
Key words: Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP), industrial clusters, decision making criteria, textile and apparel sector.
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