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Innovative new companies

An investigation into start-ups and their role of organisational and territorial social innovation

New, innovative companies. An important combination, yet one that is not always achieved. A question of the environment, of ability, but also of business culture capable of combining the new organisation of production with the necessary innovation for the company to embark upon a different path from the normal one. Then, when it comes to small and medium-sized companies, everything becomes even more complex.

The research by Rocco Reina and Marzia Ventura (from the “Magna Graecia” University of Catanzaro) and Walter Vesperi (from the University of Messina) investigates a particular aspect of innovation present in start-up companies: that is to say, social innovation. The authors start with the consideration that the Italian entrepreneurial fabric, which is historically characterised by SMEs, has witnessed the emergence in recent years of a new form of entrepreneurship based on technological innovation. But in addition to this, it has been observed how entrepreneurship can become an extraordinary activator of processes of change of a social, economic and technological nature.

All new ventures (start-ups), technological and organisational innovation forms a framework of technical but especially human relations that should be investigated and known in full. Especially because it can outline a work method to be replicated in various environments.

This is exactly what the three researchers have done, starting with a review of what has already been done on the subject, then moving on to outlining the overview of the research and then the investigation “on the field” of start-ups  in Calabria which are investigated not so much with a quantitative method, but particularly through a “tale” of experience enjoyed by those who created them.

The particular attention of the authors however focuses on the social impact that newly-established innovative companies may have on the territory in which they are set up and where they produce. An impact contrasted by all kinds of difficulties and that however indicates a desire for entrepreneurial growth even in difficult areas.

The study by Reina, Ventura and Vesperi does not aim to provide a comprehensive picture of newly-established innovative companies from the point of view of their social and territorial impact, but it can be taken as an important part of a drawing that has yet to be outlined in many aspects.

Innovazione sociale nelle startup innovative: un approccio narrativo (Social innovation in innovative start-ups: a narrative approach)

Rocco Reina, Marzia Ventura, Walter Vesperi

Paper presented at XII Scientific Colloquium on Social Enterprise, 25-25 May 2018, Department of Sociology and Social Research, University of Trento,

ISBN 978-88-909832-7-6