Sinergie-SIMA Management Conference 2021


University of Palermo, Italy
10-11 June 2021






Operations & supply chain: Chair Francesco Rizzi – University of Perugia

Cocktail in the cloud















SIMA Thematic group meetings

International business


Conference Tracks:
Leveraging intersections in management theory and practice

Risorse per resilienza e innovazione
Chair Claudio Baccarani – University of Verona

Il contributo del management a un mondo più sostenibile
Chair Umberto Martini – University of Trento

Special track Humanistic management and tourism in collaboration with IHMA

Chairs: Maria Della Lucia, University of Trento – Ernestina Giudici, University of Cagliari – Michael Pirson, Fordham University, New York

Conference conclusion, reflections and take outs

Award ceremony: Selected and Best Papers Awards, Sinergie Italian Journal of Management Best Reviewer 2021

Best Referee Award 2021

Foreword from the Conference Chairs

Dear friends,

In 2020 we have experimented the innovation of a fully virtual conference due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, current data has pushed SIMA’s Board to maintain the conference virtual for June 2021. Nonetheless, should conditions change substantially we keep the possibility of warmly welcoming you to Palermo for an in-person conference open. Our aim is to support the ongoing scientific debate and ensure that all participants have the opportunity to gain inspiration for their research and discuss their work during the conference. We are therefore preparing to host the conference on a digital platform able to facilitate a variety of session types and different ways of engaging the participants to the conference. We aim to deliver a multifaceted, constructive experience in which plenary and parallel sessions are complemented by occasions to gain in-depth feedback on the work presented as well as occasions for more informal networking and community building.

With our very best wishes for your continued health, safety and security,

Sandro Castaldo, SIMA – Arabella Mocciaro Li Destri, University of Palermo – Marta Ugolini, Sinergie


Sinergie and Sima’s common aim is to develop the contribution of Italian scholars to the international debate on management issues. Since 2016, Sinergie and Sima work together to organize the annual conference, a scientific event based on the experience that Sinergie has matured over 30 years of activity and on Sima’s academic network. The Sinergie-Sima conference is therefore a well-established scientific meeting that brings together scholars from the field of management to present and discuss their research in a collaborative and friendly environment.

The main topic of the conference will be discussed in plenary and parallel sessions on Thursday 10th and Friday 11th June 2021.

The plenary sessions will centre on contributions from well-known academics and professionals who will participate in the debate as keynote speakers, discussants or interviewees. In the parallel sessions, full papers selected through a double-blind peer review, will be presented.

One or more sessions will be dedicated to the presentation of extended abstracts to give conference participants the opportunity to present their most recent research and receive comments and suggestions from the session chair and other participants in constructive discussion sessions.

A special track will be dedicated specifically to Management Case studies. These case studies may be written and presented by academics in collaboration with firm managers. Selected cases may be invited to become part of the SIMA and SIM Case series published with Pearson.

Furthermore, a pre-conference Paper Development Workshop will be held on Wednesday 9th of June 2021 to give young scholars in-depth feedback from experienced faculty on their current research.

The official language of the conference is English, however the submission of full papers and extended abstracts in Italian is welcome and a selection will be included in specific sessions.


The legitimacy of management scholars in society increasingly rests on their ability to create social and economic value by finding solutions and offering effective and timely guidance to leaders in firms and institutions (Currie et al., 2016; Tihanyi, 2020). This is especially true in face of the extraordinary economic, societal, health and environmental challenges firms and governments are currently tackling worldwide also as a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic (Muzio & Doh, 2020).

In parallel, management practitioners are increasingly urged to adopt wide-ranging strategies able to pursue a multi-dimensional notion of firm performance (Kotlar et al., 2018); a concept that extends beyond technical and economic dimensions to embrace a larger set of issues, such as sustainability and societal impact.

Challenges such as these are too complex to be captured by any one perspective. In order to shed light on the multifaceted phenomena that underlie firm performance and societal advancement, research is spurred to knowledgeably compare and leverage contributions that may derive from adopting different disciplinary, theoretical and methodological perspectives (Eisenhardt et al., 2016; George et al., 2016), as well as by considering different levels of analysis. Furthermore, there is the fundamental need to orient such scholarly enquiry to concerns of interest for the world of practice.

Anchoring research questions to real-world phenomena allow to appreciate and grasp their multiple dimensions and manifestations. Conscious pluralism and the intentional comparison of the relative contributions offered by different disciplines, theories, methods and levels of analysis offer a way forward for the comprehension of relevant phenomena for management scholars. Though not simple, there is relevant potential to generate sound and impactful research by purposefully leveraging intersections between different perspectives in the field of management to study phenomena of interest also to practitioners.


Currie, G., Davies, J., & Ferlie, E. (2016). A Call for University-Based Business School to “Lower their Walls” Collaborating with other Academic Departments in Pursuit of Social Value. Academy of Management Learning and Education, 14(4), 742-755.
Eisenhardt, K. M., Graebner, M. E., & Sonenshein, S. (2016). Grand challenges and inductive methods: rigor without rigor mortis. Academy of Management Journal, 59(4), 1113-1123.
George, G., Howard-Grenville, J., Joshi, A., & Tihanyi, L. (2016). Understanding and tackling societal grand challenges through management research. Academy of Management Journal, 59(6), 1880-1895.
Muzio, D., & Doh, J. (2020). Introduction to COVID‐19 Commentaries. Journal of Management Studies, published online.
Scott, W. R. (2005). Institutional theory: Contributing to a theoretical research program. In Great minds in management: The process of theory development, 37(2), 460-484.
Tihanyi, L. (2020). From “That’s Interesting” to “That’s Important”. Academy of Management Journal, 63(2), 329-331.

The conference welcomes both
theoretical and empirical contributions
It also encourages the submission of business case studies to a special session that will be organized in collaboration with Società Italiana di Marketing (SIM) and Pearson

Intersection: “the point where two things come together and have an effect on each other”
Cambridge Business English Dictionary


We welcome full papers and extended abstracts that leverage intersections between disciplines, theories, methods and levels of analysis in the field of management in order to shed light on phenomena such as:

  • Uncertainty, innovations and legacies of the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Strategic entrepreneurship during crises
  • Artificial intelligence, internet-of-things and blockchain and their impact on management
  • Big data and business analytics
  • Coopetition, ambidexterity, glocal strategies and paradoxes in management and marketing research
  • Redefining the concept of success and performance
  • Capturing and theorizing heterogeneity in management inquiry
  • Heuristics and psychological biases in management
  • Trust, institutions and agency in and between organizations
  • Values, identity and reputation in management research
  • Making resources and dynamic capabilities actionable
  • Sustainable vs. temporary competitive advantage
  • Strategies of platforms, ecosystems, networks and strategic alliances
  • Corporate finance, firm growth and resilience
  • Corporate governance across legal, economic and cultural contexts
  • Corporate and business strategies in a digital world
  • Virtual communication in multicultural environments
  • Complexity, supply chains and cross boarder management
  • Innovation strategies and intellectual property
  • Stakeholders, public engagement and agenda 2030
  • Business model innovations and sustainability
  • Sharing and circular economy
  • Business ethics, hybrid organizations and B-corps
  • Corporate social irresponsibility, corruption and wrongdoing
  • Equality, diversity, inclusivity and respect in management practice and academic institutions
  • Humanistic management, human flourishing and social innovation
  • Non-market, social and political strategies

Sima Thematic Groups

In addition to papers and extended abstracts that address the 2021 Conference theme, scholars are invited, also, to submit proposals for research in various management studies related areas; these will be discussed in the following thematic sessions:

  • Strategic management and corporate governance
  • Innovation and technology management
  • Entrepreneurship
  • International business
  • Tourism and culture management
  • Small and family business
  • Retailing & Service management
  • Operations & Supply Chain Management
  • Marketing
  • Strategic Communication
  • Sustainability

More details:



Conference Proceedings
Unless publication is explicitly waived by the author(s) at the time of paper submission, full papers accepted for presentation at the conference will be published online in the referred Electronic Conference Proceedings and copyrighted with ISBN and DOI codes.

The extended abstracts presented in specific conference sessions will be published online in a separate volume of Conference Proceedings and copyrighted with an ISBN.

Conference Proceedings will be published in open access form on the Sinergie website ( after the conference. Before uploading the material, it will be edited to ensure quality; the costs of this editing work will be borne by Sinergie.

At least one author of paper or extended abstract must present the research output during the conference parallel sessions. Failure to present will result in the paper or extended abstract being excluded from the Electronic Conference Proceedings.

Publication in Sinergie Italian Journal of Management
The Scientific Committee of the conference will select a limited number of the papers addressing the specific theme of the conference (Leveraging Intersections in Management Studies) to include them in a 2022 Special Issue of Sinergie Italian Journal of Management. The papers selected for publication in the special issue will be announced during the concluding plenary session of the conference and their authors will be acknowledged with an award.

Further publication opportunites
A number of papers presented at the conference will be eligible for submission to some partner journals:
The journal Piccola Impresa\Small Business has arranged a fast-track review process for manuscripts in English language dealing with entrepreneurship or SMEs management

A special issue about Stakeholders, public engagement and agenda 2030 is being arranged for publication in a new emergent journal. The details of the editorial project will be communicated soon.
Business case studies will be eligible for publication on Pearson web platform.


9 June, 2021 – 15:00-18:30

This PDW aims to provide young scholars specific guidance and developmental feedback in the submission (or re-submission) of their working papers for potential publication to an international top-ranking journal.


PDW Format

15:00 Welcome

PART 1. Publishing qualitative and quantitative research

15:10 Challenges and Best‐practices for Planning, Executing, and Publishing Qualitative Research – Prof. Davide Ravasi (UCL School of management)

15:30 Challenges and Best‐practices for Planning, Executing, and Publishing Quantitative Research – Prof. Giovanni Valentini (IESE Business School)

15:50 Coffee break

16:00 PART 2. Roundtable discussions

Selected papers will be allocated to specific roundtables for in-depth discussion. Each roundtable will host 5 papers. Roundtable paper discussion is organized as follows:

  • Each author will be invited to provide an overview of the paper’s core message, research questions, methodology, results and contributions and the areas in which she/he is looking for specific advice (10 minutes)
  • Each paper will receive developmental comments by an expert discussant (10 minutes)
  • Q&A from the audience (10 min)

18:30 Final remarks

 Target audience and eligibility requirements

The target of this PDW are young and mid-career scholars who show robust interest for conceptual and empirical research in the field of management.

The eligibility and submission requirements are to submit:

  1. a bio sketch (one page);
  2. the most recent version of the research paper (or extended abstract) that the author would like to discuss. Papers should be written in English;
  3. a cover letter clearly stating the question(s) which they are struggling with (one page).

Authors are invited to indicate in a note on the front-page the paper’s target journal(s), and, in the case of R&R papers, the journal in which the paper is under consideration at the time of the submission. In this latter case, authors may send the received reviews to start a useful interaction with the audience of the PDW in order to improve their responses to referees.

Participants to the PDW will be selected by the organizers on the basis of the relevance and “fit” of their research with the theme of the conference, as well as on the academic quality and impact of their submissions. Preference will be given to full papers. Conceptual, qualitative and quantitative research will be equally considered in the selection process. Preference will be given to papers whose authors include at least one young scholar (PhD student/candidate, post-doctoral researcher) available to present at the PDW during the Sinergie-Sima conference.

Papers should be submitted by sending an email to and c.c. to Please indicate “PDW Sinergie Sima 2021” in the email. Please also note that for this PDW each applicant should submit only one paper.

24 MARCH, 2021: Submission Deadline for Proposals
31 MARCH, 2021: Notification of Review Committee Decisions
15 APRIL, 2021: Presenter Registration Deadline
9 JUNE, 2021: PDW

Submission of a paper should be regarded as an undertaking that, should the paper be accepted, the author who participates to the PDW should register for the Sinergie-SIMA Management conference.


Paolo Aversa, Cass Business School, London, UK
Cristina Bettinelli, University of Bergamo
Gabriella Levanti, University of Palermo
Pasquale Massimo Picone, University of Palermo


Deadlines for full papers
14 FEB 2021 Full papers Submission
19 MAR 2021 Notification of peer-review result for non-European participants
16 APR 2021 Notification of peer-review result for European participants
16 MAY 2021 Submission of revised papers for all participants
10 MAY 2021 Full paper prerecorded videos delivery
25 MAY 2021 Registration to the Conference

Deadlines for extended abstracts
1 MARCH 2021 Extended abstract Submission
31 MARCH 2021 Notification of Extended abstract evaluations
30 APRIL Extended abstract prerecorded videos delivery
25 MAY 2021 Registration to the conference

Deadlines for Paper Development Workshop
24 MARCH 2021 Submission Deadline for Proposals
31 MARCH 2021 Notification of Review Committee Decisions
15 APRIL 2021 Presenter Registration Deadline
9 JUNE 2021 PDW


All fees refer to the virtual conference.
If in-person participation will be possible at the time of the conference, an additional fee will be applied for delegates in Palermo.

Registration fee for Sinergie-SIMA 2021 online Conference*
Special fees for SIMA Members

Professors and researchers (VAT included) € 150,00 € 225,00
PhD students, fellows and undergraduate students (VAT included) € 75,00 € 110,00

*The registration fee includes all online conference sessions, online conference proceedings, and only for individuals with a postal address in Italy a 2021 free subscription to Sinergie Italian Journal of Management (printed).

Bank transfer to the following account: Fondazione Cueim at BNL, Banking
IBAN IT67W0100511700000000004041—BIC/SWIFT CODE BNLIITRR. In addition to personal identification data, please specify the reason for payment (name, surname + Conference 2021)

If payment has to be effected by a University Department, please provide an “order form” with all details for invoicing, then wait for the electronic invoice and arrange for bank transfer after receiving the electronic invoice.

For any issues and information regarding conference registration and invoicing, do not hesitate to contact: Annalisa Andriolo (

For scholars affiliated to Italian Universities it is possible to obtain free access to the conference by subscribing to Sinergie Italian Journal of Management. Please contact Annalisa Andriolo at the abovementioned email.


Register on

Registration opens: 11 January 2021

Registration closes: 25 May 2021

Standard registration fee (on line conference): € 225,00


Sinergie-Sima 2021 Conference will positively seek to promote equality, diversity and inclusion.
As conference organizers, we will promote diversity and inclusion in all aspects of the conference, including keynote and featured speakers, roundtables and, in the composition of the Organizing and Scientific Committee.



Arabella Mocciaro Li Destri, University of Palermo
Sandro Castaldo, Bocconi University
Marta Ugolini,University of Verona