Integration in Industry

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Integration in Industry


a progressive form of organizing social production, based on technological and organizational unification of different production processes in a single enterprise. Integration (kombinirovanie) in industry is directly related to concentration, specialization, and cooperation in production and promotes an increase in efficiency, rational allocation of productive forces, and the development of territorial industrial complexes.

According to V. I. Lenin’s definition, integration is “the grouping in a single enterprise of different branches of industry, which either represent the consecutive stages in the processing of raw materials (for example, the smelting of iron ore into pig iron, the conversion of pig iron into steel, and then, perhaps, the manufacture of steel goods) or are auxiliary to one another (for example, the utilization of scrap, or of by-products, the manufacture of packing materials, etc.)” (Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 27, p. 312).

Primitive forms of integration appeared in the early stages of capitalist production. With the advent of the scientific and technological revolution, concentration and integration of production constitute the leading trend in industrial development. Under capitalism, industrial integration is restricted by private ownership of the means of production, by production anarchy, and by competition.

Under socialism, with the means of production passing into public ownership, the large-scale, planned integration of industry can be accomplished, promoting the more rational use of productive resources and raising the efficiency of social production. Industrial combines with more complex and economically refined sectorial structures of production can be set up, and the size and territorial location of combines can be established on the basis of scientific considerations.

Industrial combines are formed in three ways: through the combination of successive stages in the processing of a product, the comprehensive use of raw materials, and the use by one producer of waste products of another.

The combine as a form of production organization is used in ferrous and nonferrous metallurgy, the chemical industry, petroleum refining, and the food, lumber and woodworking, and light industries. In the USSR the development of industrial combines is envisioned by the national economic plan.

Combines began to form and become extensively developed earlier in ferrous metallurgy than in other sectors. This sector typically uses all three forms of combine formation and has a variety of combined production facilities. For example, the Magnitogorsk Metallurgical Combine includes iron and manganese mines, ore preparation and concentration factories, and quarries for lime, refractory clays, quartzites, and sands; it also has a chemical complex, a works making refractory bricks, blast furnaces, and smelting, rolled products, sizing, metalware, and other works. In ferrous metallurgy combine formation is based on joining the production of ferrous metals with the extraction of iron, manganese, and chromite ores and nonore raw material and with the production of coking chemicals and refractory materials at given enterprises. About half of all extraction of the above-mentioned ores and production of all coking chemicals in the early 1970’s came from integrated enterprises. Significant quantities of construction materials and fertilizers are also produced at these enterprises.

In the comprehensive processing of petroleum, a single enterprise may produce various types of petroleum fuel, lubricating oils, and numerous chemical products (plastics, synthetic resins, chemical fibers, synthetic rubber, and the like). Integration on the basis of comprehensive use and sequential processing of natural gas was extensively developed after ways were found to use it to obtain hydrogen, acetylene, and synthetic gas (the most important semifinished products for subsequent synthesis). This development has made it possible to produce nitrogen mineral fertilizers, synthetic resins, and other chemical products at one and the same enterprise.

The nonferrous metallurgical industry has extensive opportunities for industrial integration, by using polymetallic ores comprehensively to obtain a whole series of nonferrous and rare metals, various chemical products, and construction materials. The Krasnoural’sk Combine in Sverdlovsk Oblast is an example of the integration of nonferrous metallurgy and chemical output. Along with copper and zinc and pyrite concentrate, the combine produces sulfuric acid, superphosphate, sodium sulfate, sodium bisulfate, and other chemical products.

The introduction of chemical methods of processing lumber makes it possible to combine at one enterprise various operations such as milling; the manufacture of furniture, packing materials, and other types of products made of wood; and the production of cellulose, paper, pressboard and fiberboard, hydrolytic yeast, and wood alcohol. A significant share of the by-products of logging and milling are processed in these operations. All three forms of combine formation are typical of the food industry. The production of meal and groats, the baking of bread, and the manufacture of pasta and flour-based confections are all based on grain processing. Combining the production of thermal and electric energy and the production of energy by using exhaust heat from industrial enterprises is economically efficient. Integration has become widespread in the textile industry, based on the sequential processing of raw material: spinning, weaving, and finishing. In the USSR, combines have been established with various types of output in local industry, in the service sphere, and in municipal services.

Integrated enterprises offer favorable conditions for introducing the latest achievements of science and technology, organizing continuous production processes, and reducing the length of the production cycle. Integration in industry is economically efficient because it allows reduction of relative capital investments, on-going expenses to produce a unit of output, transportation and marketing expenditures, and the costs of management. Combines that produce products in more than one sector share power, repair, transportation, storage, and other auxiliary and subsidiary services.

Steps have been outlined for the further development of industrial integration in the USSR and for the establishment of large-scale amalgamations and combines, with due consideration of the specific features of the particular sectors.


Lenin, V. I. Imperializm, kak vysshaia stadiia kapitalizma. In Poln. sobr. soch., 5th ed., vol. 27, pp. 312–13.
Materialy XXIVs”ezda KPSS. Moscow, 1971.
Bliumin, I. G. Kapitalisticheskoe kombinirovanie. Moscow-Leningrad, 1934.
Surmilo, G. V. Kontsentratsiia, kombinirovanie, spetsializatsiia i kooperirovanie v promyshlennosti. Moscow, 1960.
Kochetkov, L. M., V. D. Rebrov, and N. A. Telezhkin. Khimizatsiia i kombinirovanie v promyshlennosti SSSR. Moscow, 1965.
Efimov, A. N. Sovetskaia industriia. Moscow, 1967.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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