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The Italian Firms between Crisis and the new Globalization

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  • Accetturo Antonio
  • Giunta Anna
  • Rossi Salvatore

Abstract

This paper analyzes the characteristics of Italian firms involved in global value chains («intermediate» firms) by using the Bank of Italy survey on industrial companies. Intermediate firms show, on average, worse features than «final» firms: smaller size, lower share of white collars, lower productivity and export propensity. However we observe a strong heterogeneity, depending on the ability (and modalities) to upgrade along the value chains. There are wide differences between upgrading and non-upgrading (marginal) intermediate firms in terms of size, efficiency, human capital endowment and international competitiveness. During the 2008-2009 crisis, marginal intermediate firms performed definitely worse; moreover, facing a collapse in world trade, firms that were upgrading by expanding their international linkages were more severely hit than those that were differentiating their internal functions.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Società editrice il Mulino in its journal L'industria.

Volume (Year): (2011)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 145-164

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Handle: RePEc:mul:j0hje1:doi:10.1430/34268:y:2011:i:1:p:145-164

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Keywords: Fragmentation; Offshoring; Global Value Chains; Upgrading; Crisis; D230; L230; L240;

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References

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  1. Robert Feenstra, 2003. "Integration Of Trade And Disintegration Of Production In The Global Economy," Working Papers 986, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  2. Saliola, Federica & Zanfei, Antonello, 2009. "Multinational firms, global value chains and the organization of knowledge transfer," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 369-381, March.
  3. Baldwin, Richard & Robert-Nicoud, Frédéric, 2010. "Trade-in-goods and trade-in-tasks: An Integrating Framework," CEPR Discussion Papers 7775, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Corò Giancarlo & Grandinetti Roberto, 1999. "Strategie di delocalizzazione e processi evolutivi nei distretti industriali italiani," L'industria, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 4, pages 897-924.
  5. Baldwin, Richard & Robert-Nicoud, Frédéric, 2007. "Offshoring: General Equilibrium Effects on Wages, Production and Trade," CEPR Discussion Papers 6218, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Stefano Federico, 2010. "Outsourcing versus Integration at Home or Abroad," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 742, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  7. Elisa Giuliani & Carlo Pietrobelli & Roberta Rabellotti, 2004. "Upgrading in global value chains: lessons from latin american clusters," Working Papers 72, SEMEQ Department - Faculty of Economics - University of Eastern Piedmont.
  8. Anna M. Falzoni & Lucia Tajoli, 2008. "Offshoring and the skill composition of employment in the Italian manufacturing industries," KITeS Working Papers 219, KITeS, Centre for Knowledge, Internationalization and Technology Studies, Universita' Bocconi, Milano, Italy, revised Jul 2008.
  9. Francesco Daveri & Cecilia Jona-Lasinio, 2008. "Off-Shoring and Productivity Growth in the Italian Manufacturing Industries," CESifo Working Paper Series 2288, CESifo Group Munich.
  10. Giunta, Anna & Nifo, Annamaria & Scalera, Domenico, 2009. "Subcontracting in the Italian industry. Labour Division, Firms’ Growth and North-South Divide," MPRA Paper 13084, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  11. Sofronis Clerides & Saul Lach & James Tybout, 1996. "Is "learning-by-exporting" important? Micro-dynamic evidence from Colombia, Mexico and Morocco," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 96-30, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  12. Gene M. Grossman & Esteban Rossi-Hansberg, 2008. "Trading Tasks: A Simple Theory of Offshoring," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(5), pages 1978-97, December.
  13. Roberta Rabellotti & Alessia Amighini, 2003. "The effect of globalisation on industrial districts in Italy: evidence from the footwear sector," ERSA conference papers ersa03p500, European Regional Science Association.
  14. John Humphrey & Hubert Schmitz, 2002. "How does insertion in global value chains affect upgrading in industrial clusters?," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(9), pages 1017-1027.
  15. Bair, Jennifer & Gereffi, Gary, 2001. "Local Clusters in Global Chains: The Causes and Consequences of Export Dynamism in Torreon's Blue Jeans Industry," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1885-1903, November.
  16. Razzolini Tiziano & Vannoni Davide, 2009. "Production to Order and Performance in Domestic and Foreign Markets," L'industria, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 3, pages 437-466.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Marco Alderighi & Alberto Gaggero, 2012. "Accessibilità aerea e capacità esportativa del manifatturiero italiano," Quaderni di Dipartimento 163, University of Pavia, Department of Economics and Quantitative Methods.
  2. Giorgio Albareto & Paolo Finaldi Russo, 2012. "Financial fragility and growth prospects: credit rationing during the crisis," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 127, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  3. Enrico Beretta & Silvia Del Prete, 2013. "Banking consolidation and bank-firm credit relationships: the role of geographical features and relationship characteristics," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 901, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  4. Giorgia Giovannetti & Enrico Marvasi & Marco Sanfilippo, 2013. "Supply Chains and the Internalization of SMEs: Evidence from Italy," Working Papers - Economics wp2013_30.rdf, Universita' degli Studi di Firenze, Dipartimento di Scienze per l'Economia e l'Impresa.
  5. Mariarosaria Agostino & Jeffrey B. Nugent & Domenico Scalera & Francesco Trivieri & Anna Giunta, 2011. "Firm Productivity, Organizational Choice and Global Value Chain," Working Papers 2011R09, Basque Institute of Competitiveness.
  6. Luigi Cannari, 2011. "Networks of Firms and Local Territory: A Comment," QA - Rivista dell'Associazione Rossi-Doria, Associazione Rossi Doria, issue 4, December.

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