Usai, Carlo (2010) Lo Sviluppo della finanza etica in Italia e la conquista di un territorio difficile: il caso della Sardegna. Doctoral Thesis.
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In the first section the study describes the transformation processes – which began in the early
1970s and were subsequently multiplied by globalization – of the relationship between economy
and finance. The topic is analyzed in the light of the body of literature which had been the first to
identify the processes which are at the root of the present financial crisis. At the same time, this
body of literature was the first to provide arguments which confirm to a certain extent the
perspectives, described in the second section of this study, of those who express the growing “need”
of an ethically-oriented finance, both in terms of savings management and credit supply.
The study goes on to describe the “social history” of ethically oriented finance with a focus on the
processes of development of ethically oriented finance in Italy and the uneven path of welfare and
In the third section the study comes to empirical research focusing on Sardinia: a difficult territory,
as shown here, in economic, institutional and social terms. However the collection of ethical
savings clearly shows a growth trend, and examples of “good practises” are available, that is, firms
which turn to ethically oriented finance and seem to successfully conjugate market results and
attention to the non-economical effects of their action. In this context, ethically oriented finance
appears to be a new instrument, addressing those small-scale firms which had been put in trouble by
conventional credit, as well as the diversified world of social economy.
The study describes over time how the Banca Etica, which is the key ethically oriented finance
body in Italy, has been trying to create trustworthy relationships with Sardinian communities, with
the world of associations, with firms and local administrations, in terms of collection as well as use
of ethical savings.
The study terminates with an analysis of the strategy pursued by the Banca Etica in Sardinia, once it
took cognizance that in the region, even more than in other areas of Italy, a community animation
activity was necessary. The study finally emphasizes how the Banca Etica, in order to pursue this
strategy, has been making a big effort to conjugate the relation with credit and a relation which is
targeted to reciprocal growth by developing financial instruments in strict accordance with those
who receive the funds.
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