IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Social capital and the innovative performance of Italian provinces

  • Riccardo Crescenzi
  • Luisa Gagliardi
  • Marco Percoco

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.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
File Function: Open access version.
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library in its series LSE Research Online Documents on Economics with number 46414.

in new window

Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in Environment and Planning A, 2013, 45(4), pp. 908-929. ISSN: 0308-518X
Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:46414
Contact details of provider: Postal: LSE Library Portugal Street London, WC2A 2HD, U.K.
Phone: +44 (020) 7405 7686
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Riccardo Crescenzi & Andrés Rodríguez-Pose & Michael Storper, 2007. "The territorial dynamics of innovation: a Europe-United States comparative analysis," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 23328, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  2. Roland Benabou & Jean Tirole, 2003. "Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 70(3), pages 489-520, 07.
  3. Douglas Staiger & James H. Stock, 1994. "Instrumental Variables Regression with Weak Instruments," NBER Technical Working Papers 0151, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. DiPasquale, Denise & Glaeser, Edward L., 1999. "Incentives and Social Capital: Are Homeowners Better Citizens?," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 354-384, March.
  5. Luigi Guiso & Paola Sapienza & Luigi Zingales, 2004. "The Role of Social Capital in Financial Development," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 526-556, June.
  6. Sjoerd Beugelsdijk & Sjak Smulders, 2003. "Bridging and Bonding Social Capital: which type is good for economic growth?," ERSA conference papers ersa03p517, European Regional Science Association.
  7. Nannicini, Tommaso & Stella, Andrea & Tabellini, Guido & Troiano, Ugo, 2010. "Social Capital and Political Accountability," CEPR Discussion Papers 7782, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Michael Fritsch, 2002. "Measuring the Quality of Regional Innovation Systems: A Knowledge Production Function Approach," International Regional Science Review, , vol. 25(1), pages 86-101, January.
  9. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "Issues in Assessing the Contribution of Research and Development to Productivity Growth," NBER Chapters, in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 17-45 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Alessandro Arrighetti & Andrea Lasagni, 2011. "Capitale sociale, contesto istituzionale e performance innovativa delle imprese," SCIENZE REGIONALI, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 2011(1), pages 5-34.
  11. Paola Giuliano, 2007. "Living Arrangements in Western Europe: Does Cultural Origin Matter?," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 5(5), pages 927-952, 09.
  12. Ichino, Andrea & Maggi, Giovanni, 2000. "Work Environment And Individual Background: Explaining Regional Shirking Differentials In A Large Italian Firm," CEPR Discussion Papers 2387, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. N. Lesca, 2010. "Introduction," Post-Print halshs-00640602, HAL.
  14. Fritsch, Michael & Franke, Grit, 2004. "Innovation, regional knowledge spillovers and R&D cooperation," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 245-255, March.
  15. Audretsch, David B & Feldman, Maryann P, 1996. "R&D Spillovers and the Geography of Innovation and Production," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(3), pages 630-40, June.
  16. Archibugi, Daniele & Coco, Alberto, 2004. "A New Indicator of Technological Capabilities for Developed and Developing Countries (ArCo)," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 629-654, April.
  17. Marco Manacorda & Enrico Moretti, 2006. "Why do Most Italian Youths Live with Their Parents? Intergenerational Transfers and Household Structure," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 4(4), pages 800-829, 06.
  18. Martin Ruef, 2002. "Strong ties, weak ties and islands: structural and cultural predictors of organizational innovation," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 11(3), pages 427-449, June.
  19. Cooke, Philip & Gomez Uranga, Mikel & Etxebarria, Goio, 1997. "Regional innovation systems: Institutional and organisational dimensions," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 26(4-5), pages 475-491, December.
  20. Audretsch, David B. & Feldman, Maryann P., 2004. "Knowledge spillovers and the geography of innovation," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: J. V. Henderson & J. F. Thisse (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 61, pages 2713-2739 Elsevier.
  21. Francesco Giavazzi & Fabio Schiantarelli & Michel Serafinelli, 2009. "Attitudes, Policies and Work," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 714, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 13 Feb 2012.
  22. Cainelli, Giulio & Mancinelli, Susanna & Mazzanti, Massimiliano, 2005. "Social Capital, R&D and Industrial Districts," AICCON Working Papers 17-2005, Associazione Italiana per la Cultura della Cooperazione e del Non Profit.
  23. repec:tpr:qjecon:v:115:y:2000:i:3:p:1057-1090 is not listed on IDEAS
  24. repec:oup:qjecon:v:115:y:2000:i:3:p:1057-1090 is not listed on IDEAS
  25. Tomi Tura & Vesa Harmaakorpi, 2005. "Social capital in building regional innovative capability," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(8), pages 1111-1125.
  26. La Porta, Rafael, et al, 1997. "Trust in Large Organizations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(2), pages 333-38, May.
  27. Ron Boschma, 2005. "Proximity and Innovation: A Critical Assessment," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 39(1), pages 61-74.
  28. Mourad Dakhli & Dirk De Clercq, 2004. "Human capital, social capital, and innovation: a multi-country study," Entrepreneurship & Regional Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(2), pages 107-128, March.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:46414. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (LSERO Manager)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.