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Industrial district effects and innovation in the Tuscan shipbuilding industry

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  • Luciana Lazzeretti

    ()
    (Department of Bussines Economics, University of Florence)

  • Francesco Capone

    ()
    (Department of Bussines Economics, University of Florence)

Abstract

The aim of the present work is to investigate innovative processes within a geographical cluster, and thus contribute to the debate on the effects of industrial clusters on innovation capacity. In particular, we would like to ascertain whether the advantages of industrial districts in promoting innovation, as already revealed by literature (diffusion of knowledge, social capital and trust, efficient networking), are also keys to success in the Tuscan shipbuilding industry of pleasure and sporting boats. First, we verify the existence of clusters of shipbuilding in Tuscany, using a specific methodology. Next, in the identified clusters, we analyse three innovative networks financed in a policy to support innovation, and examine whether the typical features of a cluster for promoting innovation are at work, using a questionnaire administered to 71 actors. Finally, we develop a performance analysis of the cluster firms and ascertain whether their different behaviours also lead to different performances. The analysis results show that our case records effects of industrial clustering on innovation capacity, such as the important role given to trust and social capital, the significant worth put in interfirm relations and in each partner’s specific competencies, or even the distinctive performance of firms belonging to a cluster.

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File URL: http://iermb.uab.es/RePEc/doc/wpierm0903.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institut d'Estudis Regionals i Metropolitans de Barcelona in its series IERMB Working Paper in economics with number 0903.

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Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: May 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:esg:wpierm:0903

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Keywords: geographical clusters; industrial districts; innovation; technological transfer; shipbuilding industry;

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  1. Edward L. Glaeser & Glenn Ellison, 1999. "The Geographic Concentration of Industry: Does Natural Advantage Explain Agglomeration?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(2), pages 311-316, May.
  2. Francesco Capone & Rafael Boix, 2008. "Sources of growth and competitiveness of local tourist production systems: an application to Italy (1991–2001)," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer, Springer, vol. 42(1), pages 209-224, March.
  3. Lorenz, Edward, 1999. "Trust, Contract and Economic Cooperation," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, Oxford University Press, vol. 23(3), pages 301-15, May.
  4. Leonardo Becchetti & Andrea De Panizza & Filippo Oropallo, 2007. "Role of Industrial District Externalities in Export and Value-added Performance: Evidence from the Population of Italian Firms," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(5), pages 601-621.
  5. Cristina Boari & Andrea Lipparini, 1999. "Networks within Industrial Districts: Organising Knowledge Creation and Transfer by Means of Moderate Hierarchies," Journal of Management and Governance, Springer, Springer, vol. 3(4), pages 339-360, December.
  6. Alessandro Muscio, 2006. "Patterns of Innovation in Industrial Districts: An Empirical Analysis," Industry and Innovation, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 13(3), pages 291-312.
  7. Marco Bellandi, 1992. "The incentives to decentralized industrial creativity in local Systems of small firms," Revue d'Économie Industrielle, Programme National Persée, vol. 59(1), pages 99-110.
  8. Asheim, Bjorn T & Isaksen, Arne, 2002. " Regional Innovation Systems: The Integration of Local 'Sticky' and Global 'Ubiquitous' Knowledge," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, Springer, vol. 27(1), pages 77-86, January.
  9. Cooke, Philip, 2001. "Regional Innovation Systems, Clusters, and the Knowledge Economy," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 10(4), pages 945-74, December.
  10. Rafael Boix & Vittorio Galleto, 2005. "Sistemas Locales de Trabajo y Distritos Industriales Marshallianos en España," Working Papers wpdea0514, Department of Applied Economics at Universitat Autonoma of Barcelona.
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