The Knowledge-based Agricultural Cooperative: A Validation from the Trentino Case

25 Pages Posted: 4 May 2020

See all articles by Eddi Fontanari

Eddi Fontanari

European Research Institute on Cooperative & Social Enterprises (EURICSE)

Silvia Sacchetti

University of Trento; European Research Institute on Cooperative & Social Enterprises (EURICSE)

Date Written: February 28, 2020

Abstract

The new agri-food market is considered a detrimental factor for the competitiveness and financial equilibria of agricultural cooperatives. According to this view, as a result of market saturation and globalisation processes, shifting investments to supply chain forward activities (e.g., for brand development or for research and development activities) would represent a serious threat to the cooperative model. Taking a contrasting view, this paper aims at demonstrating that the cooperative model continues to play a strategic role in the current competitive environment. In particular, the adoption of the knowledge-based theory of the firm combined with the “open innovation” approach permits a renewed interpretation of the role of modern agricultural cooperatives as knowledge developers and disseminators, for the benefit of members and their communities. This theoretical approach will be tested by studying a sample of agricultural cooperatives operating in the province of Trento, in North-East Italy.

Keywords: Agricultural Cooperatives, Agri-food Sector, Innovation, Knowledge Creation and Transfer

JEL Classification: Q13, O31, O35, L23

Suggested Citation

Fontanari, Eddi and Sacchetti, Silvia, The Knowledge-based Agricultural Cooperative: A Validation from the Trentino Case (February 28, 2020). Journal of Entrepreneurial and Organizational Diversity, Vol. 8, No. 2, 2019, pp.46-70., Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3567748

Eddi Fontanari (Contact Author)

European Research Institute on Cooperative & Social Enterprises (EURICSE) ( email )

Via S. Giovanni 36
38122 Trento (TN)
Italy

Silvia Sacchetti

University of Trento ( email )

Via Giuseppe Verdi 26
Trento, Trento 38152
Italy

European Research Institute on Cooperative & Social Enterprises (EURICSE)

Via S. Giovanni 36
38122 Trento (TN)
Italy

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