This article discusses the question of what should be the proper conceptual framework for analysing productive phenomena. The cause for reflection on this topic stems from a proposal made by researchers from the Bank of Italy (Alampi et al., 2013) to analyse productive phenomena through the lens of an integrated geographical and sectorial perspective. The author proposes a reversal of the approach, arguing that the starting point for analysis should be the assumption that every place — as defined by a combination of natural conditions and the outcome of history — has at any given time a specific «productive chorality». This productive chorality is not merely derived from the technical, spatial, and cultural proximity of businesses, but also, and more importantly, from the cultural homogeneity and congruity of all the inhabitants of that place, who contribute, positively or negatively, to local production.
Check other articles from the issue Monográfico 2015 'Rethinking industrial districts in the XXI Century' or from other issues.