The content on chain of production relates to the statement of inquiry, understand that business operate within a system whose structure is influenced by external factors, as the chain of production consisting of all the different sectors can be viewed as an interdependent system. Businesses in the primary sector, involved in extracting raw materials, will need transportation businesses in the tertiary sector to ship these materials to businesses in the secondary sector, in order for a product to be manufactured. The commercial services for the manufactured product (e.g. distribution, advertising, retailing) would require the existence of tertiary businesses. Finally, on top of that, businesses in the quaternary sector which provide knowledge based services (e.g. research) operate within many areas of this system. External factors are at play here as well, demonstrating the interdependency of the system—if orange crop yields are poor in the primary sector then orange juice manufacturing businesses will suffer in the secondary sector, and so on.
The class content also relates to the global context, identities and relationships, as each of the businesses in a sector is an identity and the chain of production is a relationship. The link is quite clear here—economic sectors can relate to each other as they may be in the same path that raw materials take to reach consumers as a final good or service. Again, the interdependency of this production chain should be emphasised; without any one of the sectors the chain would break down.
This lesson’s content has also answered a few inquiry questions, notably how can economic sectors relate to each other?, and what path do raw materials take to consumers?. As explained above, the four (or three) different economic sectors form part of an interdependent chain that forms the path for raw materials to make their way to consumers. The primary sector is involved in the raw extraction, harvesting, and conversion of land (e.g. agricultural, mining businesses); the secondary sector includes activities such as construction and manufacturing, transforming raw materials into products; the tertiary sector provides services to other businesses and customers; and the quaternary sector provides knowledge-based services (information services companies like IBM). We see that the path raw materials take does not necessarily fall in this order:
Here is a mind map of all the concepts learnt in unit two and how they relate. Since chain of production is the first lesson, there is not much to it at the moment:
BBC Bitesize: Business Studies