Marco Bettiol, Chiara Burlina, Maria Chiarvesio, Eleonora Di Maria

From Delocalisation to Backshoring? Evidence from Italian Industrial Districts

 In recent decades, industrial districts (ID) have experienced intense delocalisation to low-cost countries, with implications for IDs’ internal structure. Recent studies, however, highlight the advantages of relocalising manufacturing in home countries. This paper investigates ID firms’ production-location strategies and backshoring decisions. The results from a survey of 259 firms in eight Italian IDs show that firms that delocalise production do not change their strategies over time and make limited recourse to backshoring. ID production is still important to guarantee product quality and access to specialised know-how.

Keywords: delocalisation; backshoring; industrial districts; manufacturing, Italy

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