Online First

The articles listed below have been accepted for publication after successfully passing the review process. They will be included in future issues of the journal.

Silvia Rita Sedita, Amir Maghssudipour

From fashion to sustainability: the key role of industrial districts

Sustainability issues are increasingly influencing firms’ decision making, leading to the creation of new business models for finding solutions to environmental and societal challenges. This work aims to explore what is the role played by industrial districts in firms’ orientation towards sustainability. It implements a Propensity Score Matching technique on a novel datatabase with information on 1300 Italian fashion firms. Their sustainability orientation is measured using the Quantitas Intelligent Business Analyzer (QIBA), an original Natural Language Processing-based data mining technique, which allows scraping firms’ websites and analyzing their content adopting a Term Frequency–Inverse Document Frequency weighting scheme. Findings suggest the existence of a sustainability-driven industrial district effect, i.e. a positive association between the sustainability orientation of fashion firms and their localization in industrial districts.

Keywords: Fashion; Environmental sustainability; Social sustainability; Natural Language Processing; Industrial districts; Made in Italy
Marco Bellandi, Maria Della Lucia, Erica Santini

Humanistic place leadership, cultural enhancement, and change in industrial districts

Drawing inspiration from the works of Fiorenza Belussi on multiple paths of development in local productive systems, the essay contributes to the ongoing debate on factors facilitating such transformations, focusing primarily on industrial districts (IDs) as open learning systems. With specific reference to the Italian context, this paper recalls the delicate balance between socio-cultural and economic elements within IDs transitioning towards new paths of development, crucial for facing the current technological and societal challenges. The essay proposes to look at the possible diffusion of humanistic management (HM) and cultural enhancement of economic strategies, as new triggering factors against lock-in conditions and tendencies toward degradation during phases of ID transformation. HM prioritizes the well-being of individuals and ethical decision-making, aligning with a broader societal purpose. Cultural enhancement, rooted in a common heritage, supports place identity, and suggests bases for multiple specializations. The convergence of HM and cultural enhancement within IDs may offer to renewed place-leaderships levers for strategies of transition pointing to sustainable paths that align with broader societal goals in an era of disrupting challenges.


Keywords: Industrial districts; humanistic management; cultural-based development; place leadership
Christel Keller Garganté, Sara Moreno Colom

Local policies to promote care communities: the case of VilaVeïna

The aim of the article is to analysis the VilaVeïna project promoted by the Barcelona City Council to develop neighbourhood care communities. Specifically, the manuscript analyses to what extent VilaVeïna fits into the proposals for the transformation of public care policies and services from the perspective of the commons. On the one hand, it analyses the initial conceptualisation of the community in the design of VilaVeïna and its materialisation in the practices involved in its implementation. On the other hand, this analysis puts in dialogue the elements that characterise the project within the framework of the community with the conceptual proposal of the commons (Zuriña, 2020; Blanco et al., 2017). To reach these objectives, we present a case study based on interviews with political and technical profiles, as well as interviews and focus groups with users of the service. The results show up the progress made by this public policy in building communities of care and the limitations in achieving a radically communitarian resource defined from the perspective of the commons.

Keywords: Community; care; public policies; common goods
Clara María Karis, María Laura Zulaica

Green spaces as determinants of quality of life in urban and periurban areas: analysis of uses and preferences in an intermediate Argentine city

Latin American cities show accelerated processes of expanding growth with direct consequences on the quality of life of their inhabitants. In this context, the article analyzes the uses of public green spaces and the preferences of the population in an intermediate Argentine city and its periurban area, based on data from a survey conducted among visitors of these spaces. The results indicate that the evaluated aspects are associated with the natural and sociocultural attributes of these spaces and the characteristics of the respondents, highlighting the interaction and differences between objective and subjective variables of quality of life, especially in the urban-rural gradient.


Keywords: Green infrastructure; survey; cultural ecosystem services; case study; periurban area
Jose-Luis Hervas-Oliver, Carles Boronat-Moll, María Eizaguirre, Juan Antonio Márquez García

Extending the marshallian industrial districts framework: reframing types of multinationals

Recently, scholars have begun to show a reorientation of the Marshallian Industrial District (MDI) framework towards addressing topics that were not central to the mainstream, such as multinationals and their different sub-lines of research. In this study, we reflect on multinationals and their challenge to the established MID boundaries. By reviewing literature, we elaborate on, integrate and discuss types and effects of multinationals in districts, highlighting a new type of actor that has recently become more prominent: multinational private equity funds in MIDs. We elaborate on different types of multinationals in MIDs, reviewing and integrating extant evidence about private equity funds as new established realities. The study proposes new sub-lines of inquiry to extend and strenghten the MID framework.


Keywords: Multinationals; industrial districts; innovation
Marco Bettiol, Greta Buoso, Eleonora Di Maria

Sustainability Strategies in Clusters and The Role of Communication

Environmental sustainability impacts on industrial districts and their lifecycle evolutionary processes. Nevertheless, research in this direction is scant, suggesting on the one hand, the role of lead firms of global value chains and, on the other hand, potential contributions of suppliers. The paper explores how district firms have invested in sustainability by analyzing sustainable-oriented communication strategies (certification, web, exhibitions) of Italian leather and jewelry clusters. Results show that districts are evolving by including sustainability in their strategies. A variety of sustainability strategies emerge among district firms, with differences also between firms in B2B and B2C markets.


Keywords: Communication; sustainability; jewelry; leather; cluster; certifications
Margarita Barañano Cid, Pedro Uceda Navas

Elders, circles of care and territory. Care networks in vulnerable neighborhoods of Madrid

The care that involves older people in vulnerable Madrid neighborhoods is favored by the prolonged permanence of this age group in these spaces and by the existence in them of broader networks of this activity, both in terms of concern, reception and care provision. The circulation of care includes their homes and also other neighborhood supports. Through qualitative analysis, it is confirmed that family care is more present in the narratives referring to the most peripheral and aging neighborhoods, with more permanence and home ownership.


Keywords: Elders; care networks; care circles; vulnerable neighborhoods; residential permanence
Marina Sagastizabal Emilio-Yus, Amaia Eiguren Munitis

An intergenerational public-community care initiative in the Basque Country, Spain: bringing together two at risk groups: children and elderly people

Contemporary society is older and more diverse than ever before. In the face of increasing demand for care provision, there is an urgent need for new social responses. Intergenerational projects represent a step in this direction, through the construction of community spaces that strengthen both the relational dimension of care and promote social cohesion. The particular case study addressed in this paper is an intergenerational public-community project in Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain. This project facilitates the generation of networks of mutual care between at risk children and elderly people. Using a qualitative methodology, this paper analyses some of the achievements and limitations. The conclusions suggest a need to further support and sustain projects of this type, which promote a more inclusive society for people of all ages.


Keywords: Intergenerational; public-community care; elderly people; children; Basque Country
Félix Arrieta, Martín Zúñiga, Bakarne Etxeberria

Reorganizing care: Leadership(s) in the construction of local ecosystems in the Historical Territory of Gipuzkoa

The main objective of this article is to analyze the different care ecosystems developed in the Territory of Gipuzkoa, emphasizing the leadership, relationships and distribution of functions that occurs among the different agents that participate in their implementation. The methodology has been eminently qualitative, developed through a total of 12 in-depth semi-directed interviews with professionals from the public sphere (politicians and technicians) and Third Sector entities. The results show that, although the development of care ecosystems is recognized as a succesful political strategy in the territory, and a clear space of social and political consensus, its extension and consolidation may be in question.


Keywords: Ecosistems; care; governance; leadership
Michaela Trippl, Simon Baumgartinger-Seiringer, Jannik Kastrup

Challenge-oriented regional innovation systems: towards a research agenda

In this letter, we reflect on recent modifications of the regional innovation system (RIS) approach that have been prompted by persistent environmental, social, and economic problems. Scholars have begun to advocate a reorientation of the RIS framework towards addressing territorial sustainability challenges and have introduced the notion of challenge-oriented regional innovation systems (CORIS). While the CORIS approach holds promise given the challenges of our time, several unresolved issues remain. We elaborate on and discuss three themes that demand further research. Firstly, there is a need for in-depth studies of the geographies of problems. Systematic analyses of the origins and interrelations of territorial challenges are high in demand. Secondly, the geographies of challenge-oriented innovation-exnovation dynamics warrant more attention. We argue that future research should delve into questions around the development, testing and upscaling of innovative solutions, as well as the unlocking and destabilisation of unsustainable practices in various spatial contexts. Lastly, we contend that a better understanding of the geographies of RIS reconfiguration is necessary. This entails shedding light on various forms of system-level agency involved in reorienting or transforming historically-grown real-world RIS in different types of regions.


Keywords: Challenge-orientation; regional innovation systems; CORIS; challenge-oriented regional innovation systems; research agenda
María José Magliano, María Victoria Perissinotti

Between the public and the common. Community kitchens and public policy in the face of the challenges of the pandemic in the city of Córdoba, Argentina

This article analyzes the relationship between public policy and the management of the common in the city of Córdoba, Argentina. Based on a qualitative methodology that combines in-depth interviews and documentary analysis, it reflects on the community “know-how” that supports the management of the common in urban peripheries. It shows that, in the context of the Covid-19 health emergency, this “know-how” was mobilized by women from popular sectors to respond to new challenges, while at the same time it was “incorporated” by different public policies to support the strategies of sustainability of life.


Keywords: Management of the common; community kitchen; public policies; State; Argentina