This task aims to better understand the role of GIs as a driver of socio-economic development and international competitiveness at the territorial level.
Although the primary objective of GIs remains to preserve high-quality productions and to alleviate information asymmetry between producers and consumers, one of the rationales for protecting GIs is found in the territorial development potential of origin labelled products. Since production processes are located within a specific demarcated area, several are the positive socio-economic benefits and spill-overs effects triggered by these productions. Evaluating the impacts of GIs at the territorial level requires enhanced data availability based on disaggregated and specific data. This Deliverable addresses these issues by using a new geo-referenced database to investigate the effects of GIs at the territorial level in terms of local socio-economic development and international competitiveness.
As a first step, therefore, we create a multi-year panel dataset that reconstructs the time space variability to support the research on the Geographical Indications (GIs) impacts with machine-readable data for all GIs in almost all the European countries at the most disaggregated geographical level (Local Administrative Units, LAUs). This database allows us to have accurate and geographically detailed machine-readable data to evaluate the impact of the GI quality scheme on different socio-economic dimensions. These data were used in the studies presented in this Deliverable. In terms of methodologies, we rely
on policy-evaluation techniques.
The first study discusses the effect of GIs on trade by conducting a systematic literature review and performing a meta-analysis exercise (Contribution 1).
Findings reveal that, although the different methodological and sample choices of the different papers do play a role in influencing the results, the effect of GIs on trade is confirmed to be positive for intra- and extra-EU flows.
In the second contribution (Contribution 2), we empirically test the impacts of GIs on local socio-economic development at the municipality level by using the geo-referenced database built up in this project.2 The analysis focuses on the wine GIs in Italian rural areas since the 60s. Findings show positive effects of GI on rural development: all else equal, rural municipalities with GIs experience higher population growth and a recomposition of the local economy toward higher value-added sectors. A specific extension of this study has been dedicated to demographic trends with additional evidence showing that for almost all Italian regions, the average population growth rate of rural municipalities with GIs is higher than the average population growth rate observed for the non-GI municipalities of the region, and it is also higher than both the regional and national average growth rate of population contribution 3).
The other two studies apply state-of-the-art policy evaluation methods to investigate the international territorial competitiveness of GIs from two new perspectives, never addressed by the literature so far: the agri-food Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) attractiveness of the EU NUTS3 and the export specialization at the municipality level in Italy.
In the former case, we found a positive impact of GIs on attracting more agri-food FDI inflows, creating new job opportunities as well as generating positive inter-sectorial spill overs on local employment (Contribution 4).
The last contribution exploits information on export performances in the agri-food sector to evaluate the effects of GIs on the value, volume and unit values of exports as well as on the export concentration of Italian municipalities (Contribution 5). After considering the impact on the overall agri-food sector performance, we look at the wine GI market.
Results show that GIs enhance agri-food export values, volumes and unit prices. This evidence remains true for the wine sector where the acknowledgement of wine GIs shapes also trade specialisation patterns by promoting an inter-sectorial re-organization of exports’ shares with significant effects on intra-EU trade.