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Social capital and the innovative performance of Italian provinces

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  • Riccardo Crescenzi
  • Luisa Gagliardi
  • Marco Percoco

Abstract

Social capital has remained relatively underexplored in innovation literature due to the lack of consensus on the most suitable operationalisation for the analysis of innovative dynamics. This paper aims to fill this gap by looking at social capital as propensity towards civicness and prosocial behaviour that facilitates the circulation of nonredundant knowledge among otherwise disconnected groups. The quantitative analysis of the innovative performance of Italian provinces shows that social capital—proxied by blood donations and participation into voluntary associations—is an important predictor of innovative performance after controlling for ‘traditional’ knowledge inputs (R & D and human capital). In addition, instrumental variable analysis makes it possible to identify clear causal links between social capital and innovation, suggesting that social norms play an important role in shaping the incentives for knowledge generation, circulation, and accumulation. Keywords: innovation, social capital, knowledge transfer, regional development

Suggested Citation

  • Riccardo Crescenzi & Luisa Gagliardi & Marco Percoco, 2013. "Social capital and the innovative performance of Italian provinces," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 45(4), pages 908-929, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:pio:envira:v:45:y:2013:i:4:p:908-929
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    Cited by:

    1. Crescenzi, Riccardo & Nathan, Max & Rodríguez-Pose, Andrés, 2016. "Do inventors talk to strangers? On proximity and collaborative knowledge creation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 177-194.
    2. Andrés Rodríguez-Pose & Marco Di Cataldo, 2015. "Quality of government and innovative performance in the regions of Europe," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(4), pages 673-706.
    3. repec:kap:jtecht:v:42:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1007_s10961-016-9550-z is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Roberto Antonietti & Ron Boschma, 2018. "Social capital, resilience and regional diversification in Italy," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 1804, Utrecht University, Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning, Group Economic Geography, revised Jan 2018.
    5. Charlie Karlsson & Urban Gråsjö & Sofia Wixe (ed.), 2015. "Innovation and Entrepreneurship in the Global Economy," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 15906, April.
    6. repec:eee:respol:v:47:y:2018:i:4:p:782-795 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. repec:eee:tefoso:v:129:y:2018:i:c:p:43-55 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Andrea Ascani & Luisa Gagliardi, 2015. "Inward FDI and local innovative performance. An empirical investigation on Italian provinces," Review of Regional Research: Jahrbuch für Regionalwissenschaft, Springer;Gesellschaft für Regionalforschung (GfR), vol. 35(1), pages 29-47, February.
    9. repec:oup:jecgeo:v:17:y:2017:i:6:p:1179-1208. is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Andrea Filippetti & Frederick Guy & Simona Iammarino, 2015. "Does training help in times of crisis? Training in employment in Northern and Southern Italy," Working Papers 28, Birkbeck Centre for Innovation Management Research, revised Dec 2015.
    11. Luisa Gagliardi, 2015. "Does skilled migration foster innovative performance? Evidence from British local areas," Papers in Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 94(4), pages 773-794, November.
    12. Christoph Hauser, 2015. "Effects of Employee Social Capital on Wage Satisfaction, Job Satisfaction and Organizational Commitment," Working Papers 2015-12, Faculty of Economics and Statistics, University of Innsbruck.
    13. Michele Capriati & Marialuisa Divella, 2017. "Why growth rates differ? Path of innovation in Italian provinces," Working Papers 1702, c.MET-05 - Centro Interuniversitario di Economia Applicata alle Politiche per L'industria, lo Sviluppo locale e l'Internazionalizzazione.
    14. Matthias Siller & Christoph Hauser & Janette Walde & Gottfried Tappeiner, 2015. "Measuring regional innovation in one dimension: More lost than gained?," Working Papers 2015-14, Faculty of Economics and Statistics, University of Innsbruck.
    15. Roberto Antonietti & Maria Rosaria Ferrante & Riccardo Leoncini, 2016. "Local market size, social capital and outsourcing: evidence from Emilia Romagna," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 47(1), pages 243-260, June.
    16. Nicola Cortinovis & Jing Xiao & Ron Boschma & Frank G van Oort, 2017. "Quality of government and social capital as drivers of regional diversification in Europe," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 17(6), pages 1179-1208.
    17. Riccardo Crescenzi & Andrea Filippetti & Simona Iammarino, 2017. "Academic inventors: collaboration and proximity with industry," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 42(4), pages 730-762, August.
    18. Jesús Peiró-Palomino, 2016. "European regional convergence revisited: the role of intangible assets," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer;Western Regional Science Association, vol. 57(1), pages 165-194, July.
    19. Roberto Antonietti & Maria Rosaria Ferrante & Riccardo Leoncini, 2014. "Trust your neighbour. Industrial relatedness, social capital and outsourcing," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 1403, Utrecht University, Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning, Group Economic Geography, revised Jan 2014.
    20. Marco Percoco, 2015. "Entrepreneurship, Family Ties, and Land Inequality: Evidence from Italy," Growth and Change, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(3), pages 443-457, September.
    21. repec:bla:presci:v:95:y:2016:i:4:p:693-707 is not listed on IDEAS
    22. Luis Carvalho & Mario Vale, 2018. "Biotech by Bricolage? Agency, institutional relatedness and new path development in peripheral regions," Papers in Evolutionary Economic Geography (PEEG) 1801, Utrecht University, Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning, Group Economic Geography, revised Jan 2018.
    23. Roberto Antonietti & Maria Rosaria Ferrante & Riccardo Leoncini, 2015. "Infrastructure endowment, social capital and outsourcing: evidence from Emilia Romagna, Italy," Chapters,in: Innovation and Entrepreneurship in the Global Economy, chapter 13, pages 310-330 Edward Elgar Publishing.

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    JEL classification:

    • H7 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations
    • H70 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - General

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