Global Fashion Management Conference 2015 Global Fashion Management Conference at Florence , Renaissance of Marketing and Management in Fashion (p.764-767)

ENTREPRENEURIAL DISCOVERY PROCESS AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE WINE INDUSTRY IN GREECE: UNDERSTANDING INDUSTRY NEEDS TOWARDS THE JRC’S INNOVATIVE APPROACH

키워드 :
wine industry,Greek wine,foreign market,small size firm,EDP

초록

Greece wine production has shown swinging trends: in 2013 it grew by 17,9% reaching 3.7 Million Hectoliters (USDA), but it 2014 it decreased by 15% (Greek Wine Federation), whilst grape prices went up. Greece has a huge potential, but it is still a small producer in Europe.

The Greek wine industry got through several phases: before the 80s the product was quite “poor”, but with the entrance in the market of some educated winemakers who have introduced a new business philosophy and approach to wine, production has changed (GaiaWines.gr). The population of firms consist of a few larger producers, and most of the companies are relatively small. Although the quality has been improved, most of the production is addressed to the domestic market, since only few producers have established export networks (Vlachvei et al., 2012).

Thus, the economic crisis that affected Greece has created difficulties also for domestic sales. Background research has outlines some of the limits of the Greek wine industry: according to Vlachvei et al. (2012),the new competitive challenges require owner and managers to achieve a better understanding of operational and marketing process that can contribute to the development of their brand in order to develop an integrated marketing communication approach.

The Greek wine sector is extremely fragmented with a high predominance of small size firms; as size increases, the degree of professional organization grows, as well as the relative presence of foreign markets (Papalexiou, 2009). Thus, it has been recognized that Greek wine export is disorganized (Baiocchi, 2011; Papalexiou, 2009). The limits imposed by UE to plantings have affected Greece growth strategy: Greece is still a small producer and although it shows similarities with the south of Italy, it is impossible to think to follow the “Italian Style” (Baiocchi, 2011). Thus the urgency of undertaking a propter model for the development of the industry is seen as a priority for the Greek wine system.

Wineries have seen in related businesses an effective tool for improving the competitiveness of the wine industry (Papalexiou, 2009); a lot has been done for achieving an integration between wine tourism and the wine business. Background research describes the experiments undertaken around wine routes, conceived as a useful tool for improving the wine sector (Hall & Mitchell, 2000) and for the development of rural areas (Karafolas, 2007).

In 2014 the Joint Research Center (JRC) of the European Commission has undertaken a Smart Specialization pilot project that involves rural areas in Northern Greece, in order to foster local economic development by adopting an entrepreneurial discovery approach (EDP). JRC can be considered as a source of technology generation and a service that provides expert advice to the institutions of the European Union and more specifically to the European Commission and the European Parliament (Moncada-Paterno`-Castello, 2003). It can be guessed how JRC outcomes could impact citizens’ lives.

From September 2014 for 15 months JRC has been involved in the European Parliament Preparatory Action; the aims of this project are: to facilitate the refinement and implementation of the RIS3 strategy in a region heavily hit by the crisis; and to serve as a model for other convergence regions in Greece and Europe (from JRC website). The project has seen the collaboration of JRC – IPTS (Institute for Prospective Technological Studies) with DG Regio and the Managing Authority of Eastern Macedonia and Thrace. The wine sector has been selected, together with few others for the preparatory action. The approach that has been adopted was the Entrepreneurial Discovery Process (EDP), in order to allocate resources under the guide of entrepreneurial actors, from the public and private sector.

EDP is “a process in which the entrepreneurial actors are discovering and producing information about new business and innovation activities and the government is collecting, assessing and transforming this knowledge into policy action” (http://s3platform.jrc.ec.europa.eu/s3-governance).EDP plays a leading role in the Smart Specialization Strategy (S3): EDP suggests that the allocation of resources is the result of a process undertaken by entrepreneurial actors. It emerges how innovative this process is, if compared to past industrial policies. EDP contributed to minimise failures of market innovation. The Smart Specialisation perspective let entrepreneurs discovering the right domains of future specializations (Foray, 2012). A newer approach to regional competitiveness (Ketels, 2013) has been followed by European Commission, that, in order to promote an efficient and effective public funding policy in regional economic development (Mempel-Śnieżyk, 2013), has actively supported Smart Specialisation Initiatives. On the other side, S3 has a prior role in the EU Regional and Cohesion Policy 2014-2020 (Martínez-López & Palazuelos-Martínez, 2014).

This paper examines the role that EDP and S3 have had in the definition of a strategy for the development of the local wine industry. The paper aims to answering to the following research questions: What are the elements seen as priorities from entrepreneurs for developing the local wine industry in Greece? Is there an overlapping between the findings emerging from JRC workshops and those that have been pointed out by relevant opinion makers and experts in the Greek wine industry? What about the effectiveness of EDP in wine?

The paper is structured as follows: In the first part a description of the Greek wine industry will be carried out; in a second section authors will point out JRC’s EDP approach; thirdly an analysis of data collected from JRC sessions and from interviews with international experts in Greece will be performed.

9 experts that took part to the workshop will be interviewed. Data will be collected through telephone interviews and web based survey; once collected data will be analyzed through a text analysis.

A literature review on EDP and theoretical issues that have inspired the organization of JRC sessions will be presented in order to support Research Questions. The papers ends up with a discussion and conclusions in order to provide inputs for professionals, and policy makers.