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Role of Industrial District Externalities in Export and Value-added Performance: Evidence from the Population of Italian Firms


  • Leonardo Becchetti
  • Andrea De Panizza
  • Filippo Oropallo


Becchetti L., De Panizza A. and Oropallo F. (2007) Role of industrial district externalities in export and value-added performance: evidence from the population of Italian firms, Regional Studies 41, 601-621. The paper tries to shed light on the export and value-added performance of industrial districts by integrating information on the population of Italian firms (from the ASIA database of the Italian Statistical Institute) with balance sheet data for all limited-liability companies in selected manufacturing industries. The findings show that firms located in industrial districts (specialized or not in the leading manufacturing activity of the district) export more and have higher added value than firms located elsewhere, net of the impact of relevant controls. The robustness check undertaken on the agglomeration-performance nexus detects, as expected, a significant relationship between dichotomous district indicators and (global and industry-specific) continuous measures of agglomeration and specialization. Export and value-added performance results are confirmed when proxying location in industrial districts with these continuous variables and when considering the weight of subcontracting and outsourcing activities of productive units as additional controls. Becchetti L., De Panizza A. et Oropallo F. (2007) Le role des effets externes industriels dans les performances des exportations et de la valeur ajoutee: des preuves aupres des entreprises italiennes, Regional Studies 41, 601-621. Cet article cherche a eclaircir les performances des exportations et de la valeur ajoutee des districts industriels en integrant des donnees aupres du parc d'entreprises italiennes (la base de donnees ASIA de l'Institut italien de la statistique) a un bilan pour toute societe a responsabilite limitee dans certains secteurs industriels. Il s'avere que les entreprises situees dans des districts industriels (qu'elles se specialisent dans l'activite phare industrielle du district ou non) exportent plus et jouissent d'une valeur ajoutee plus elevee que ne le font les entreprises situees ailleurs, compte tenu de l'impact des controles en cours. Le controle de solidite fait sur la connexion agglomeration-performances laisse voir, comme prevu, un important rapport entre des indicateurs dichotomiques des districts et des mesures d'agglomeration et de specialisation continues (a la fois globales et specifiques). Si l'on assume des emplacements dans des districts industriels a partir de ces variables continues, et que l'on considere le poids de la sous-traitance et des approvisionnements externes des etablissements productifs comme des controles supplementaires, les performances des exportations et de la valeur ajoutee sont confirmees. Mesures d'agglomeration geographique Districts industriels Performances des exportations Becchetti L., De Panizza A. und Oropallo F. (2007) Die Rolle der Externalitaten von industriellen Bezirken fur die Export- und Wertsteigerungsleistung: Belege aus der Bevolkerung italienischer Firmen, Regional Studies 41, 601-621. In diesem Beitrag untersuchen wir die Exporte und die Wertsteigerungsleistung industrieller Bezirke, indem wir Informationen uber die Bevolkerung von italienischen Firmen (aus der ASIA-Datenbank des Statistikinstituts Italiens) mit den Bilanzdaten aller Gesellschaften mit beschrankter Haftung in ausgewahlten produzierenden Branchen kombinieren. Unsere Ergebnisse zeigen, dass Firmen in industriellen Bezirken (unabhangig davon, ob sie auf die fuhrende produzierende Aktivitat in diesem Bezirk spezialisiert sind) mehr exportieren und eine hohere Wertsteigerung erfahren als Firmen an anderen Standorten, auch wenn die Auswirkung der relevanten Kontrollen berucksichtigt wird. Die Robustheitsprufung der Ballungs-Leistungs-Verknupfung zeigt wie erwartet eine signifikante Beziehung zwischen den dichotomen Bezirksindikatoren und den (globalen und branchenspezifischen) kontinuierlichen Massstaben der Ballung und Spezialisierung. Die Ergebnisse hinsichtlich des Exports und der Wertsteigerungsleistung werden bestatigt, wenn man den Standort in industriellen Bezirken durch diese kontinuierlichen Variablen ersetzt und das Gewicht der Zulieferung und externen Vergabe von produktiven Einheiten als zusatzliche Kontrolle berucksichtigt. Geografische Ballungsmassstabe Industrielle Bezirke Exportleistung Becchetti L., De Panizza A. y Oropallo F. (2007) El papel de los efectos externos en comarcas industriales para el rendimiento de exportacion y de valor anadido: ejemplo de la poblacion en empresas italianas, Regional Studies 41, 601-621. Con este ensayo pretendemos arrojar luz sobre el rendimiento de exportacion y valor anadido de las comarcas industriales al combinar informacion sobre la poblacion de las empresas italianas (base de datos ASIA del Instituto Italiano de Estadisticas) con datos de balances financieros para todas las sociedades de responsabilidad limitada en selectas industrias manufactureras. Nuestros resultados indican que las empresas ubicadas en comarcas industriales (especializadas o no en actividades lideres de fabricacion en la comarca) exportan mas y tienen un valor anadido superior que las empresas ubicadas en otros lugares, aunque se tenga en cuenta el impacto de los controles pertinentes. Al comprobar la solidez de los nexos entre aglomeracion y rendimiento, se detecta, tal como se preveia, una relacion significativa entre los indicadores dicotomicos de comarcas y las medidas continuas (para una industria o para todas) de aglomeracion y especializacion. Se confirman los resultados del rendimiento de la exportacion y del valor anadido al sustituir la ubicacion en las comarcas industriales por estas variables continuas y al considerar el peso de los subcontratos y servicios externos de gestion de las unidades productivas como controles adicionales. Medidas de aglomeracion geografica Comarcas industriales Rendimiento de exportacion

Suggested Citation

  • 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, vol. 41(5), pages 601-621.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:regstd:v:41:y:2007:i:5:p:601-621
    DOI: 10.1080/00343400701281691

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Guiso, Luigi & Schivardi, Fabiano, 1999. "Information Spillover and Factor Adjustment," CEPR Discussion Papers 2289, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Gabi Dei Ottati, 2000. "Exit, Voice, And Loyalty In The Industrial District: The Case Of Prato," Working Papers wp175, Centre for Business Research, University of Cambridge.
    3. Soubeyran, Antoine & Thisse, Jacques-Francois, 1999. "Learning-by-Doing and the Development of Industrial Districts," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 156-176, January.
    4. James R. Tybout, 2001. "Plant- and Firm-Level Evidence on "New" Trade Theories," NBER Working Papers 8418, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    Cited by:

    1. Luciana Lazzeretti & Francesco Capone, 2009. "Industrial district effects and innovation in the Tuscan shipbuilding industry," IERMB Working Paper in economics 0903, Institut d'Estudis Regionals i Metropolitans de Barcelona.
    2. Rafael Boix & Joan Trullén, 2009. "Industrial Districts, Innovation and I-district Effect: Territory or Industrial Specialization?," European Planning Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 18(10), pages 1707-1729, February.
    3. de Panizza, Andrea, 2008. "Performance, IT maturity and offshoring behaviour of Italian manufacturing corporations in the dire straits of globalisation," MPRA Paper 22029, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Pinuccia Calia & Maria Ferrante, 2013. "How do firms combine different internationalisation modes? A multivariate probit approach," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 149(4), pages 663-696, December.
    5. Valeria Gattai, 2015. "Foreign exposure and heterogeneous performance of Italian firms: A survey of the empirical literature (1992-2014)," Working Papers 300, University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics, revised Apr 2015.
    6. Roberto BASILE & Cristiana DONATI & Rosanna PITTIGLIO, 2013. "Industry Structure And Employment Growth: Evidence From Semiparametric Geoadditive Models," Region et Developpement, Region et Developpement, LEAD, Universite du Sud - Toulon Var, vol. 38, pages 121-160.
    7. Pietro de Matteis & Filomena Pietrovito & Alberto Franco Pozzolo, 2016. "Determinants of exports: firm heterogeneity and local context," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 352, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    8. Amel Ben Abdesslem & Raphaël Chiappini, 2016. "Cluster Policy and Firm Performance: A Case Study of the French Optic/Photonic Industry," GREDEG Working Papers 2016-26, Groupe de REcherche en Droit, Economie, Gestion (GREDEG CNRS), University of Nice Sophia Antipolis.
    9. repec:mth:raee88:v:9:y:2017:i:2:p:1-17 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Mariasole Bann√ö & Diego Giuliani & Enrico Zaninotto, 2014. "Going abroad on regional shoulders: The role of spillovers on the composition of regional exports," DEM Discussion Papers 2014/06, Department of Economics and Management.
    11. Valeria Gattai, 2015. "Internationalisation and performance at the firm-level: what we learn from Italy," Economia e Politica Industriale: Journal of Industrial and Business Economics, Springer;Associazione Amici di Economia e Politica Industriale, vol. 42(4), pages 475-509, December.
    12. repec:bla:tvecsg:v:108:y:2017:i:5:p:554-570 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Karl Wennberg & Göran Lindqvist, 2010. "The effect of clusters on the survival and performance of new firms," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 34(3), pages 221-241, April.
    14. 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.


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