Complessità e distretti industriali. Dinamiche, modelli, casi realiEdited by Alberto Quadrio Curzio and Marco Fortis Il Mulino - October 2002
In Italy there are more than 200 main industrial districts which account for over two million jobs, about 40% of Italy's total manufacturing employment and 60% of all jobs in companies that make the most familiar made in Italy products (fashion, home furniture, food and also traditional mechanical engineering products). Made in Italy products are well know all over the world for their high quality and industrial districts are the leading manufacturers of these quality products. These districts, which almost always enjoy global leadership in their respective industries account for more than one-third of all Italian exports. The Italian district model is a spontaneous one, born without the help of industrial policies and it consists on small and medium-size enterprises, generally located in some of Italy's northern and central provinces, away from large metropolitan areas.
The system of Italian industrial districts seems to have produced a "model of capitalism" that is different from those of the "Anglo- Saxon" and "Rhine Valley". However, the Italian model - which might be defined as "horizontal or network capitalism"- is not limited to Italy. In many other countries, although through different ways, industrial districts have reached a remarkable economic growth. Just think of Silicon Valley or Hsinchu-Taipei.