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Science and Technology Parks in Italy: main features and analysis of their effects on the firms hosted


  • Danilo Liberati

    () (Bank of Italy)

  • Marco Marinucci

    () (Bank of Italy)

  • Giulia Martina Tanzi

    () (Bank of Italy)


We analyse the results of a survey conducted by the Bank of Italy in the spring of 2012 on Italian science and technology parks. First we describe the main features of science parks in Italy. Then we investigate whether they have been effective in improving the economic performance and innovative capacity of the firms located within them. We find a pronounced heterogeneity between science and technology parks, whose cooperation with public research institutions is characterized by physical proximity. Although the business situation of firms located in science and technology parks tends on average to be better than that of similar �non-park� firms, a difference-in-differences estimation shows that entering a science and technology park did not generally improve firms� business performance and their propensity to innovate compared with external counterparts.

Suggested Citation

  • Danilo Liberati & Marco Marinucci & Giulia Martina Tanzi, 2014. "Science and Technology Parks in Italy: main features and analysis of their effects on the firms hosted," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 983, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  • Handle: RePEc:bdi:wptemi:td_983_14

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Mariagrazia Squicciarini, 2008. "Science Parks’ tenants versus out-of-Park firms: who innovates more? A duration model," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 33(1), pages 45-71, February.
    2. Link, Albert N. & Scott, John T., 2003. "U.S. science parks: the diffusion of an innovation and its effects on the academic missions of universities," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 21(9), pages 1323-1356, November.
    3. Richard Ferguson & Christer Olofsson, 2004. "Science Parks and the Development of NTBFs-- Location, Survival and Growth," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 29(1), pages 5-17, January.
    4. Francesca Lotti & Giovanni Marin, 2013. "Matching of PATSTAT applications to AIDA firms: discussion of the methodology and results," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 166, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    5. Squicciarini, Mariagrazia, 2009. "Science parks, knowledge spillovers, and firms' innovative performance: evidence from Finland," Economics Discussion Papers 2009-32, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    6. Colombo, Massimo G. & Delmastro, Marco, 2002. "How effective are technology incubators?: Evidence from Italy," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 31(7), pages 1103-1122, September.
    7. Ángela Vásquez-Urriago & Andrés Barge-Gil & Aurelia Rico & Evita Paraskevopoulou, 2014. "The impact of science and technology parks on firms’ product innovation: empirical evidence from Spain," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 24(4), pages 835-873, September.
    8. Mariagrazia Squicciarini, 2009. "Science parks: seedbeds of innovation? A duration analysis of firms’ patenting activity," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 32(2), pages 169-190, February.
    9. Albert Link & John Scott, 2006. "U.S. University Research Parks," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 25(1), pages 43-55, April.
    10. Hu, Albert Guangzhou, 2007. "Technology parks and regional economic growth in China," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 76-87, February.
    11. Elisa Salvador, 2011. "Are science parks and incubators good “brand names” for spin-offs? The case study of Turin," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 36(2), pages 203-232, April.
    12. Zhong Zhao, 2004. "Using Matching to Estimate Treatment Effects: Data Requirements, Matching Metrics, and Monte Carlo Evidence," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(1), pages 91-107, February.
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    Cited by:

    1. Albahari, Alberto & Pérez-Canto, Salvador & Barge-Gil, Andrés & Modrego, Aurelia, 2017. "Technology Parks versus Science Parks: Does the university make the difference?," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 116(C), pages 13-28.
    2. Kelsi G. Hobbs & Albert N. Link & John T. Scott, 2017. "Science and technology parks: an annotated and analytical literature review," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 42(4), pages 957-976, August.
    3. M. Ferrara & F. Lamperti & R. Mavilia, 2016. "Looking for best performers: a pilot study towards the evaluation of science parks," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 106(2), pages 717-750, February.
    4. Otello Ardovino & Maria Rosaria Carillo & Luca Pennacchio, 2016. "R&D cooperation within Italian technological districts: A microeconometric analysis," Discussion Papers 2_2016, CRISEI, University of Naples "Parthenope", Italy.
    5. Federica Bertamino & Raffaello Bronzini & Marco De Maggio & Davide Revelli, 2016. "Local policies for innovation: the case of technology districts in Italy," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 313, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    6. Mario BENASSI, 2014. "Exploring Incubation Performances and Its Determinants," Departmental Working Papers 2014-09, Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods at Università degli Studi di Milano.
    7. Andrea Bellucci & Luca Pennacchio & Alberto Zazzaro, 2016. "Public subsidies for SME research and development: Empirical evaluation of collaborative versus individual place-based programs," Mo.Fi.R. Working Papers 133, Money and Finance Research group (Mo.Fi.R.) - Univ. Politecnica Marche - Dept. Economic and Social Sciences.

    More about this item


    Scientific and Technology Parks; Matching; Difference in Differences;

    JEL classification:

    • C31 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models; Quantile Regressions; Social Interaction Models
    • L25 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Performance
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives

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