What are the different types of industry? Industry is a broad, sweeping term that refers to the production of a good or service within a defined economy. Industry is further broken down into three to five different sectors. The first three sectors are viewed as uncontested types of industry. These three classifications are primary, secondary, and tertiary. There is still some debate, or preference, on the inclusion of quaternary and quinary into types of industry classification.
Primary industry is the production and acquisition of raw materials directly from the planet. This includes agriculture and farming, mining, logging, drilling for oil, fracking, and fishing, to name a few. Primary industry is concerned with selling and distributing unprocessed goods to factories and refineries for processing and fabrication.
Processing raw materials is the function of secondary industry. Before products are ready for consumption they must first be shaped, built, refined, manipulated, and packaged into the products that consumers demand. Secondary industry is as varied and numerous as the human imagination. Every new invention, product and discovery has the ability to create secondary industry. One of the more recognizable secondary industries is the packing industry: everything requires a package, from food and toys to oil and ammunition. When you here the words secondary industry, just think fabrication, refinement, processing, and assembly.
The service of shipping raw materials or goods from one location to another is a type of tertiary industry. Tertiary industry is the provision of a service. This can be in the form of managerial oversight, wait staff, educators, military personnel, healthcare providers, and so forth. As economies advance and develop, more and more tertiary industry is created. As an economy advances, its types of industry evolve from primary to secondary to tertiary.
The following classifications are not always understood to be unique types of industry and sometimes they are lumped into the tertiary category. The first is quaternary. This industry is defined by research and technological development. Scientists, researchers, and academics directly involved in the pursuit of knowledge and the advancement of science fall into this category. The second classification is the quinary sector. This type of industry is rarely seen as its own category but as a subcategory of the quaternary industry. This subsection is comprised of the highest and most elite levels of authority. Here, one would expect to find government, high ranking executives, and heads of media, universities, nonprofits, and healthcare.
Once a sector of industry is established, further categorization is based on ownership, size, and basis of materials used. For example, marine, forest, or mineral based industry would define the basis of materials. Size refers to production volumes and the number of people employed in the target industry. Ownership can refer to private, public (government), joint, or any combination there of.
There are other means of classifying types of industry, but this is done through independent classification systems. Governments utilize their own specific systems and individual markets have unique categorical standards. A good example is the Industry Classification Benchmark: this is used in finance. It is also acceptable to classify industry by its target product: paper industry, chemical industry, et cetera.