Economic Geography Research Group

Fostering research in Economic Geography

Download Working Paper 02.07 (PDF, 105KB).

2007 Annual Symposium Papers

Working Paper 02.07

Towards a local model for the internationalization of Italian firms in Eastern Europe

Christian Sellar


The purpose of this paper is to investigate the interactions between Italian textile and clothing firms and local businesses and institutions and their effects on local economies in Eastern Europe. I am arguing that Post Socialist transformation in Eastern Europe at local level can be reinterpreted as the emergence of hybrid spaces, in which, through external influences, both institutions and firms re-work their relationships between themselves and the territory. Specifically, I am looking at Italian Foreign Direct Investment, Joint Venture and subcontracting in the Textile & Clothing sector as an example of firms transformation, and to the attraction of European Union funds through international co-operation from institutional side. In this paper I am looking at what Michael Dunford (Dunford: 2006) called 'Marshal second argument' of the districts understood as 'communities of firms and people,' and more specifically how the relationship between firms and institutions in four local areas in Eastern Europe is transformed through the combined effect of foreign (Italian) investments and EU funded programs of twinning and institutional co-operation.