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The impact of industrialization on Infrastructure

Choose one topic (choices can be an area such as medicine, labor, hygiene, transportation, etc.) and discuss the impact of industrialization. Make sure you support your argument with evidence from the assigned readings.


The era of industrialization was characterized by social, economic, environmental and infrastructural changes. The society moved from an agrarian to an industrial one, with more focus on manufacturing and processing. This affected major sectors of the economy. One of the main areas affected was the infrastructure.
Infrastructure is a general term that refers to the services and structures that are put in place to support development. One of the common forms of infrastructures is the transport networks, which apply to the roads, rails, bridges and airports that are in place (Tilly, 2010). The transport sector was fundamental in the industrial revolution. Movement of raw materials and finished products largely depended on the network of carriage laid down. Waterways, railways and roads were the main forms of transport during this era. Further, the transport systems also determined the patterns of settlement. Most people lived along the railways and roads where they could easily move their products. It is notable that that the water transport systems were the cheapest and most affordable to manufacturing firms. They used this means to carry bulky and heavy products such as coal, which could have otherwise impacted negatively on the other means of transport. This led to significant investment in improving this system through activities such as the expansion of canals to the pave way for ships and boats.
In 1807, the steamboat was developed. It had a unique contribution to industrialization as it made transport faster and easier across long distances (Edward, Coyle, & Novack, 2006). The road system was also improved through techniques such as macadam roads where animals pulled carts full of goods. This later paved the way to stoned, marram and then tarmac roads. In the early 1800’s, the locomotive engines were discovered. They could carry more goods and human across different locations more easily and efficiently (Hewitt, Johnson, & Wield, 1992).
In conclusion, the development of transport system was a fundamental factor in the industrialization era. It made traveling faster, safer and efficient.

Edward, B., Coyle, J. & Novack, R. (2006). Management of transportation. Mason, OH: South- Western Educational Press.
Hewitt, T., Johnson, H. & Wield, D. (1992). Industrialization and development. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Tilly, R. (2010). Industrialization as a historical process. Mainz: European History Institute.

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