Reaching the SDGs by 2030: At what point is Italy? Evidence from firms at the regional clusters’ level


  • Raffaella Montera Pegaso Telematic University
  • Salvatore Esposito De Falco Sapienza University of Rome



2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, Sustainable development goals, SDG contribution, geographical localization, regional clusters, Italy


Framing of the research. The SDGs implementation, one of the more urgent and current challenges, requires the adaptation to sub-national contexts and the involvement of many actors including the firms.

Purpose of the paper. The paper examines the Italian situation as to the achievement of the SDGs through the lens of the adoption of the 2030 Agenda by the firms from different Italian regions.

Methodology. The research involved a sample of 30 Italian listed companies from Northern and Central-Southern Italy, selected by the CONSOBs list of firms providing a non-financial declaration. An integral reading of the documents with subsequent interpretation were performed.

Results. Regional localization does not affect the overall contribution to the SDGs being limited for all firms. Instead, the geographic localization of firms at regional scale differentiates the prioritized SDGs: Northern firms are more oriented to social and economic SDGs, while Central-Southern firms to environmental ones.

Research limitations. The paper represents a preliminary exploration of the Italian firms advancements towards the SDGs over a regional space. Future research developments could be addressed to the sample enlargement and the focus on sub-national specificities of other countries around the world.

Managerial implications. Italian firms should enhance their commitment to the 2030 Agenda in all its ambitions, incorporating the sustainable goals within the corporate culture and strategic posture.

Originality of the paper. The study responds to the need of considering the sub-national specificities in the literature on sustainable development by capturing the connections between firms, belonging territory, and SDGs.





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