Implementation of regional innovation networks: a case study of the biotech industry in Campania

Purpose of the paper: The paper aims to investigate whether Distretto ad Alta Tecnologia Campania Bioscience – CB, an emergent regional innovation network promoted by the Campania Regional Authority, can become sustainable, i.e. whether it can achieve the expected results and last in the future.

Methodology: The work is based on a qualitative method – a single case study – and investigates the sustainability of CB in reference to three theoretical aspects: a) the structure of innovation networks and the linkages established within them; b) the external context; c) the advantages and disadvantages of being part of such networks.

Findings: The above theoretical aspects have been properly considered when implementing CB. Therefore, up to now, CB is a candidate for a sustainable regional innovation network.

Research limitations: CB is still in an embryonic phase. This exploratory study leads to results that need to be confirmed – or that might be denied – by future, longitudinal studies.

Implications: Policy makers aiming to implement new regional innovation networks could recall the best practices adopted by the Campania Regional Authority when implementing CB.

Originality/value of the paper: To our knowledge it is rare to find articles trying to test sustainability of regional innovation networks in reference to Italy. This work therefore represents one of the first attempts to do so.

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