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Current Research

  • POLISS – H2020 IF:Smart Specialisation is a successful innovation policy concept which has become a cornerstone of the European cohesion policy and the European 2020 agenda. SmartSpec has the objective of fostering regional innovation and promoting sustainable and inclusive growth in the EU. SmartSpec also addresses several of the Sustainable Development Goals. However the early implementation of SmartSpec policies has raised concerns among scholars and policy makers who have pointed to a number of gaps in its conceptualisation design and implementation. POLISS (“Policies for Smart Specialisation”) will tackle these gaps with the aim of making the design implementation and evaluation of Smart Spec policies more effective in Europe. POLISS is a joint collaboration of 8 leading European universities and 14 partners spanning local governments development agencies international organizations research institutes and private companies. POLISS brings together a diverse set of actors from all the fields contributing to SmartSpec; therefore it adopts a multidisciplinary approach by integrating their insights and knowledge. Building on their expertise and everyday engagement with SmartSpec policies POLISS aims at: a) providing new systematic evidence and methodological tools to scholars policy makers and local practitioners for designing and assessing SmartSpec actions in EU regions and beyond; b) building a PhD programme where a new generation of experts in regional development and innovation policy will be trained and once graduated will be possibly employed in regional national and European private or public organisations that work on regional development and innovation; c) providing a forum for coordinating the vast community of researchers and practitioners working on local development and innovation which is often sparse and fragmented.


  • GOTAM Cities – H2020 IF: We live in a rapidly urbanising world where the most part of the world population both in advanced and emerging economies live and work in cities. These dense agglomerations of individuals generate significant economic benefits which have been widely investigated and documented in the economic literature. It has been indeed observed that despite densely populated urban areas might show high wages and locational costs they still attract most innovative activities and skilled workers. In such a global race the European Union (henceforth EU) is apparently lagging behind in comparison with the US and other Anglo-Saxon economies (e.g. Canada and Australia) despite the several policy initiatives put in place since the launch of the Lisbon Strategy including the Europe 2020 Strategy and the 2009 Blue Card Directive all of them aiming at attracting the best and the brightest to the European Union. These declared ambitions could be frustrated even further since the EU along with other countries is experiencing a widespread backlash against immigration. The diffusion of such anti-immigration sentiment is also worrisome because the recovery from the Great Recession of 2008 is far from being in sight for many EU regions while the access to a diverse set of skills via high skilled immigrants could boost the innovative sectors needed for economic growth. The general aim of the GOTaM project is to understand how talents are attracted to cities and how they impact on the innovative performance and overall prosperity of the cities in destination countries. The project will be hosted by ICRIOS and the principle investigator will be given a contract with Bocconi for the duration of the project.


  • Knowledge Diversity Building by Inventors - H2020 ITN:Why do some inventors build up knowledge in a broad variety of technological areas while others stick to their field of expertise? Recent research has shown that inventor teams involving an individual with diverse knowledge are more likely to introduce breakthrough inventions. In the light of a general trend towards specialization and teamwork this finding raises concern about an undersupply of breakthrough inventions and warrants policy intervention to stimulate individual knowledge diversity. However to design effective policy instruments we need to know how highly skilled knowledge workers make decisions regarding the scope of their expertise throughout their careers. To this end the proposed research aims to explicate the mechanisms driving knowledge diversity. The researcher will be supervised by prof. Alfonso Gambardella. decisions of individual inventors


  • Technological change industry evolution and employment dynamics – PRIN:The aim of this project is to develop an integrated analysis of the anatomy and dynamics of innovation processes and the ensuing patterns of industrial change and employment dynamics starting from the modes in which new knowledge is incorporated in business firms all the way to the processes of innovation-driven “Schumpeterian” competition. This project will be carried out using advanced statistical and econometric methodologies applied both at the firm and sectoral level of analysis. Crucially large scale datasets deriving from different sources will be merged. Empirical results will be interpreted at the light of comprehensive theoretical models able to account for the economic impact of technological change the emergence of product and process innovation and the presence of different institutional regimes within the labour market.


  • Entrepreneurs As Scientists: When and How Start-ups Benefit from A Scientific Approach to
    Decision Making - PRIN:
    In this project Bocconi University Politecnico di Milano and Politecnico di Torino will collaborate to study the implications of a scientific approach to entrepreneurial decision making. Entrepreneurs using a scientific approach select information and make decisions about their business mirroring the approach used by researchers when developing and testing theories in scientific research. We focus on three questions 1 What is the impact of a scientific approach on the decision of an entrepreneur to select/develop a business idea 2 Which contingencies influence the adoption of the scientific approach 3 What are the effects of the scientific approach in later-stage entrepreneurial firms.