Traditional Industrial Districts in the Face of Globalization: The Case of the Marche Footwear District
43 Pages Posted: 3 Apr 2013
Date Written: February 22, 2013
This paper studies the case of the Marche footwear districts. Statistical evidence and interviews with entrepreneurs suggest that the traditional inter-firm relationships within these districts have significantly changed during the past decade. Some leading firms have been building up more exclusive relations with their suppliers, including those abroad, along "buyer-driven" value chains. Moreover, firms have been adopting different strategies, following two main paths: the first is a "focusing-on-quality" strategy, based on upgrading the quality of the goods and investing in brands, R&D and specific distribution channels; the second is a "focusing-on-costs" strategy, which aims at minimizing the production costs of a medium-quality range of goods, including outsourcing abroad. This study shows that firms which focused on quality did better than others, both in the years before the crisis of 2008-09 and during the recession.
Note: Downloadable document is in Italian
Keywords: global value chain, industrial districts, internationalization, footwear industry, firms’ organization and strategies
JEL Classification: L23, L25, L67, R11
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation