Silvia Sacchetti

Via Verdi, 26 - 38122 Trento
tel. 0461 281425
silvia.sacchetti[at]unitn [dot] it
Carriera accademica ed attività didattica

Silvia Sacchetti è Professore Associato di Politica Economica presso l'Università di Trento, Dipartimento di Sociologia e Ricerca Sociale. Collabora inoltre con Euricse (European Research Institute on Cooperative and Social Enterprise). La sua attività di ricerca è incentrata sullo studio di soluzioni istituzionali e organizzative che migliorino l'inclusione e la giustizia sociale. Nel corso degli ultimi anni si è occupata dello studio della governance delle imprese sociali e cooperative, nell'ottica di comprendere come queste organizzazioni possano contribuire a dare risposte alle principali sfide sociali ed ambientali attuali. Fa attualmente parte dello European Research Board della Alleanza Internazionale delle Cooperative (ICA) e di EMES network sullo studio dell'impresa sociale. Fa parte del Chief Editorial Board del Journal of Entrepreneurial and Organizational Diversity pubblicato da Euricse, ed è Associate Editor dello European Management Journal. Di prossima pubblicazione è il volume curato per Routledge (insieme ad Asimina Christoforou e Michele Mosca) su Social Regeneration and Local Development. Cooperation, Social Economy and Public Participation.


Professional biography

I have joined the University of Trento in 2017. Before, I have been conducting academic activity elsewhere, at  the Open University (Faculty of Business and Law), University of Birmingham (Business School), and at the University of Stirling (Management School). At Birmingham I joined the Institute for Industrial Development Policy. The Institute provided a focal point for the teaching and study of the nature of business enterprises, networks, industrial districts and local economic development. Particular attention was given to the implications of exclusive governance structures with respect to globalisation, uneven development, knowledge creation, creativity and critical thinking. At Stirling issues of socio-economic development have been taught and researched by sharpening the focus on the conditions facilitating the development of creative contexts or spaces and their import for the evolution of needs, associated values and ends.

At the very start of my academic career I was at the University of Bologna in Forli (Faculty of Political Science) and then at the University of Ferrara (Faculty of Economics). My work has contributed to the growth of a teaching and research stream on innovation, production knowledge and local economic development. As a junior researcher first I conducted applied research at Antares (Research Centre on Territorial Development at the University of Bologna-Forli’), at the Department of Commerce at the Emilia-Romagna Region, and Ervet Emilia Romagna (local development agency), where research outcomes have informed a number of industrial policy documents and reports.

Interessi di ricerca

Research interests

My research is concerned with the development of inclusive economies and localities with the aim of increasing people well-being. To this end I address the governance of enterprises and their networks, the underpinning values and consequences of decision making in private organisations as well as in local development policy. My aim is to build a body of literature that contributes to explain the impact that taking a cooperative and inclusive approach to business and policy choices can have in terms of development model.

Recently I have focused on three areas: the third sector (including cooperative firms and social enterprises) social capital and local economic development. One of my current projects studies the involvement of users in the governance of social enterprises that provide health and other welfare services, its outcomes and impacts. Another one focuses on how social enterprises contribute to the regeneration of physical spaces where communities can cooperate and develop new opportunities. 

Specific research lines have addressed:

Research line 1: The implications of different governance forms and policy choices for socio-economic development, focusing on:

  • The governance and networking of cooperatives and social enterprises
  • The features of multi-stakeholder governance of social enterprises, their implications for externalities  and their impacts over the public interest
  • Inclusive and exclusive preferences underpinning different business models and their impacts over the public interest
  • Inclusive and exclusive preferences underpinning different spatial policies and their impacts over the public interest
  • Social capital, and particularly cooperation leading to the rise of networks of social enterprises in Scotland for the promotion of public interest
  • Development models for Biosphere Reserves  

Research line 2: Creativity and (organizational) context: implications for individual satisfaction and motivations, focusing on the analysis of worker microdata concerning individual wellbeing and organizational processes in the organizations of the social economy. Specifically I focus on:

  • The relation between organisational dimensions (such as membership, perceived fairness and autonomy; involvement, teamwork, training and learning), individual motivations and aspects of individual satisfaction
  • The resilience of individual motivations within complex systems (i.e. universities; social enterprise)

Recent collaborations involve working with Assist Social Capital on a development model for Unesco's designated Biosphere Reserves that reflects the values of inclusion and cooperation, and with Euricse on inclusive governance models. The British Academy is one of the funders that have recently supported my research. 

Attività di ricerca

My latest book:


Edited by Silvia SacchettiAsimina ChristoforouMichele Mosca

© 2018 – Routledge

The first idea in putting together this volume was to go beyond the nowadays widespread idea of spatial regeneration, take a step back and look at what has become a transversal phenomenon across groups and societies: social poverty. Social poverty is the paucity of social relations and especially of cooperation among people. So the idea of the book is to analyse what institutions and what entrepreneurial solutions can reinstate cooperation back into society and communities, and help to address social poverty. The second idea was that, although social enterprises have been celebrated in many contexts as organisations that can favour cooperation, they cannot succeed on their own. So the volume wanted to analyse a number of contextual factors that complement social entrepreneurial initiatives, from web technologies, to participatory democracy, city leadership, finance, and physical spaces.


My latest Journal Special Issue is on:

Community-Based, Collaborative Solutions to Sustainable Economic Development in and around Biosphere Reserves

Published open access on The Journal of Entrepreneurial and Organizational Diversity (JEOD), this issue is completely dedicated to the topic on community-based and collaborative solutions to sustainable economic development in and around Biosphere Reserves. The issue is edited by Colin Campbel – SEBR Network and OASIIS (Scozia) – and Silvia Sacchetti – University of Trento.

The Unesco programme “Man and the Biosphere” recognizes, at international level, the presence of territorial areas where the natural resources are protected and valuated thanks to the presence of institutions and organisations that emphsise cooperative features.The articles published identify a framework for research (the article by Sacchetti and Campbell) as well as case studies which analyze the role of the institutional framework as well as of social enterprises as socio-enviromental infrastuctures: these, among the production of goods and services of collective interest, contribute to refocus approaches and models of local development from the point of view of social capital, inclusion and sustainability. 



Campbell, Colin and Sacchetti, Phd, Silvia, Editorial: Community-Based, Collaborative Solutions to Sustainable Economic Development in and Around Biosphere Reserves (October 18, 2017). Journal of Entrepreneurial and Organizational Diversity, Special Issue on Community-Based, Collaborative Solutions to Sustainable Economic Development in and around Biosphere Reserves, Vol. 6, No. 1, 2017, pp. 1-9. Available at SSRN:

Sacchetti, Phd, Silvia and Campbell, Colin, Biosphere Reserves: An 'Enabling Space' for Communities (October 18, 2017). Journal of Entrepreneurial and Organizational Diversity, Special Issue on Community-Based, Collaborative Solutions to Sustainable Economic Development in and around Biosphere Reserves, Vol. 6, No. 1, 2017, pp. 10-32.. Available at SSRN:

Sacchetti, Phd, Silvia and Campbell, Colin, Creating Space for Communities: Social Enterprise and the Bright Side of Social Capital (February 24, 2015). Journal of Entrepreneurial and Organizational Diversity, Vol. 3, No. 2, 2014, p. 32-48. Available at SSRN:



Tiruneh, E.A., Sacchetti, S. and Tortia, E., 2017. Do art experts (bohemians) attract high-skilled professionals? Evidence from panel data in German regions. Competition & Change, p.1024529417744143.


My latest work on GOVERNANCE can be found in the following working papers:

Sacchetti, Phd, Silvia and Borzaga, Carlo, The Foundations of the 'Public' Organisation: Strategic Control and the Problem of the Costs of Exclusion (December 4, 2017). Euricse Working Papers, No. 98 | 17. Available at SSRN:

Birchall, Johnston and Sacchetti, Phd, Silvia, The Comparative Advantages of Single and Multi-Stakeholder Cooperatives (September 13, 2017). Euricse Working Papers No. 95|17. Available at SSRN: or

Sacchetti, Phd, Silvia, Governance for a 'Socialised Economy'. A Case Study in Preventive Health and Work Integration (December 29, 2016). Euricse Working Papers, 89|16. Available at SSRN: or

Sacchetti, Phd, Silvia and Catturani, Ivana, The Institutions of Governance. A Framework for Analysis (June 15, 2017). Euricse Working Papers, 92 | 17. Available at SSRN:

Borzaga, Carlo and Sacchetti, Phd, Silvia, Why Social Enterprises are Asking to Be Multi-Stakeholder and Deliberative: An Explanation Around the Costs of Exclusion (April 14, 2015). Euricse Working Papers, 75 | 15. Available at SSRN: or

Sacchetti, Silvia & Ermanno, Tortia, 2016. "A needs theory of governance," Econometica Working Papers wp59, Econometica.

Sacchetti, Phd, Silvia and Tortia, Ermanno C., The Internal and External Governance of Cooperatives: Membership and Consistency of Values (September 17, 2013). Euricse Working Paper No. 62 | 13. Available at SSRN: or


Silvia Sacchetti's SSRN page

Silvia Sacchetti's IDEAS page

Silvia Sacchetti on ResearchGate


Appartenenza a società e comitati scientifici

European Management Journal - Associate Editor

Journal of Entrepreneurial and Organizational Diversity - co-Chief Editor

Academic researcher at Euricse, Trento, Italy

EMES member

ICA (International Cooperative Alliance) member of the European Research Committee




Silvia Sacchetti's EURICSE page

Silvia Sacchetti's EMES page

Silvia Sacchetti's SSRN page

Silvia Sacchetti's IDEAS page