Third sector organizations, like the rest of the economic system, have been heavily affected by the pandemic. The aim of this work is to study resilience and adaptability to crisis in terms of economic results and innovative outcomes of the cooperative business model in the Italian third sector during the COVID-19 pandemic. This study uses new evidence from a recent survey on the Italian third sector and consists of two main parts. In the first, the institutionalist literature on contractual failures is used as an interpretative key in the comparison between the business model, governance and routines in social cooperatives versus other non-profit organizations (NPOs) interpreted as third sector entities. In the second, we use new data from a third sector survey in the Marche region, collected in the late spring of 2021 at the end of the pandemic outbreak.Empirical hypotheses concern organizational resilience and adaptation to unexpected negative shocks in cooperatives and other NPOs. The results show that, in the management of the crisis, cooperatives were better able to preserve their human capital and resorted to layoffs less often than other NPOs. Shared decision-making, employee involvement, and the adaptability of the work process emerge as dominant organizational characteristics that support resilience and service innovation in cooperatives. The main policy implication concerns the ability of cooperatives to play a stabilizing and a-cyclical role during the crisis and to fill the supply gaps left open by other organizational forms (private, non-profit and the public sector). The originality of this paper lies in the new approach to cooperative organizations and in the analysis of the reactions of cooperatives during the pandemic crisis.

The Resilience and Adaptative Strategies of Italian Cooperatives during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Roberta Troisi
Conceptualization
2021-01-01

Abstract

Third sector organizations, like the rest of the economic system, have been heavily affected by the pandemic. The aim of this work is to study resilience and adaptability to crisis in terms of economic results and innovative outcomes of the cooperative business model in the Italian third sector during the COVID-19 pandemic. This study uses new evidence from a recent survey on the Italian third sector and consists of two main parts. In the first, the institutionalist literature on contractual failures is used as an interpretative key in the comparison between the business model, governance and routines in social cooperatives versus other non-profit organizations (NPOs) interpreted as third sector entities. In the second, we use new data from a third sector survey in the Marche region, collected in the late spring of 2021 at the end of the pandemic outbreak.Empirical hypotheses concern organizational resilience and adaptation to unexpected negative shocks in cooperatives and other NPOs. The results show that, in the management of the crisis, cooperatives were better able to preserve their human capital and resorted to layoffs less often than other NPOs. Shared decision-making, employee involvement, and the adaptability of the work process emerge as dominant organizational characteristics that support resilience and service innovation in cooperatives. The main policy implication concerns the ability of cooperatives to play a stabilizing and a-cyclical role during the crisis and to fill the supply gaps left open by other organizational forms (private, non-profit and the public sector). The originality of this paper lies in the new approach to cooperative organizations and in the analysis of the reactions of cooperatives during the pandemic crisis.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11386/4776382
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