Local Economies in times of crisis: Italian Industrial Districts experience

Rosaria Bisceglia

The most interesting examples of industrial district were born in Italy in the '70s, especially in Tuscany and Emilia Romagna, during a problematic period of the industrial development in the world, characterized by the crisis of the Fordist model and the beginning of the decentralized production.
Since now, they represented a succesful experience for italian economy.

The present paper identifies the average strengths and weaknesses of the Italian industrial districts , by using information and data coming from an investigation by Il Sole 24 Ore - the best known Italian business newspaper - and by the Observatory of Italian Industrial District.

It tries to answer the following questions:
How did the system of industrial districts react in these years of crisis?
How may they maintain and improve their competitiveness?

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