Alessandra Colombelli

Alessandra Colombelli

Alessandra Colombelli is Associate Professor at Politecnico di Torino, where she teaches Strategy and Organisation and Business Management. She holds a PhD in Economics and Management of Technology and an MSc in Management Engineering from the University of Bergamo.

She is member of the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Centre (EIC at the Politecnico di Torino, Research Associate at the CNRS-GREDEG-University of Nice Sophia Antipolis and the BRICK, Collegio Carlo Alberto.
She serves as Technical Assessors at the I3P (the incubator of Politecnico di Torino). She was formerly Marie Curie Fellow at the Manchester Business School, research associate at the University of Cagliari, post-doc fellow at the University Lumière Lyon2 and the University of Turin. She is Editor of Regional Studies and member of the Editorial Review Board of Small Business Economics.

She has been involved in several national and international research projects and as a consultant for public and private institutions. Her publications cover several topics in the fields of entrepreneurship, economics of innovation and regional economics. Her research was published in highly ranked international journals like Research Policy, Industrial and Corporate Change, Small Business Economics, Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Journal of Technology Transfer, International Entrepreneurship and Management Journal, Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Regional Studies, and International Journal of Production Economics. She has been awarded the Giorgio Rota Best Paper in 2005 and the Emerald Award for Excellence in 2012.

Selected publications

  • COLOMBELLI, A., ORSATTI, G., QUATRARO, F., (2019), “Local knowledge composition and the emergence of entrepreneurial activities across industries: evidence from Italian NUTS3 regions”, Small Business Economics, Springer,
  • COLOMBELLI, A., PAOLUCCI, E., UGHETTO, E., (2019), “Hierarchical and relational governance and the life cycle of entrepreneurial ecosystems”, Small Business Economics, 52(2), 505-521, Springer, 10.1007/S11187-017-9957-4
  • COLOMBELLI, A., D’AMICO, E., PAOLUCCI, E., RICCI, R., (2018), “Attività e modelli universitari di trasferimento tecnologico”, Economia e Società Regionale, 3, 10-27, Franco Angeli, 10.3280/ES2018-003002
  • COLOMBELLI, A., QUATRARO, F., (2018), “New firm formation and regional knowledge production modes: Italian evidence”, Research Policy, 47(1), 139-157, Elsevier, 10.1016/J.RESPOL.2017.10.006
  • ANTONELLI, C., COLOMBELLI, A., (2017), “The locus of knowledge externalities and the cost of knowledge”, Regional Studies, 51(8), 1151-1164, Routledge, 10.1080/00343404.2017.1331294
  • COLOMBELLI, A., QUATRARO, F., (2017), “Green start-ups and local knowledge spillovers from clean and dirty technologies”, Small Business Economics, 52(4), 773-792, Springer, 10.1007/S11187-017-9934-Y
  • COLOMBELLI, A., (2016), “The impact of local knowledge bases on the creation of innovative start-ups in Italy”, Small Business Economics, 47(2), 383-396, Springer, 10.1007/S11187-016-9722-0
  • COLOMBELLI, A., KRAFFT, J., VIVARELLI, M., (2016), “To be born is not enough: the key role of innovative start-ups”, Small Business Economics, 47(2), 277-291, Springer, 10.1007/S11187-016-9716-Y
  • ANTONELLI, C., COLOMBELLI A, (2015), “External and internal knowledge in the knowledge generation function”, Industry and Innovation, 22(4), 273-298, Routledge, 10.1080/13662716.2015.1049864
  • ANTONELLI, C., COLOMBELLI, A., (2015), “The knowledge cost function”, International Journal of Production Economics, 168, 290-302, Elsevier, 10.1016/J.IJPE.2015.06.031
  • COLOMBELLI, A., (2015), “Top management team characteristics and firm growth: evidence from a sample of listed companies”, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, 21(1), 107-127, Emerald Publishing, 10.1108/IJEBR-10-2013-0181
  • AURICCHIO, M., CANTAMESSA, M., COLOMBELLI, A., CULLINO, R., ORAME, A., PAOLUCCI, E., (2014), “Gli incubatori d’impresa in Italia”, Questioni di Economia e Finanza, 216, 3-65, Banca d’Italia,
  • COLOMBELLI, A., KRAFFT, J., QUATRARO, F., (2014), “High-growth firms and technological knowledge: do gazelles follow exploration or exploitation strategies?”, Industrial and Corporate Change, 23(1), 261-291, Oxford University Press, 10.1093/ICC/DTT053
  • COLOMBELLI, A., KRAFFT, J., QUATRARO, F., (2014), “The emergence of new technology-based sectors in European regions: a proximity-based analysis of nanotechnology”, Research Policy, 43(10), 1681-1696, Elsevier, 10.1016/J.RESPOL.2014.07.008
  • COLOMBELLI, A., QUATRARO, F., (2014), “The persistence of firms’ knowledge base: a quantile approach to Italian data”, Economics of Innovation and New Technology, 23(7), 585-610, Routledge, 10.1080/10438599.2013.871164
  • COLOMBELLI, A., HANED, N., LEBAS, C., (2013), “On firm growth and innovation: some new empirical perspectives using French CIS”, Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, 26, 14-26, Elsevier, 10.1016/J.STRUECO.2013.03.002
  • COLOMBELLI, A., KRAFFT, J., QUATRARO, F., (2013), “Properties of knowledge base and firm survival: evidence from a sample of French manufacturing firms”, Technological Forecasting & Social Change, 80(8), 1469-1483, Elsevier, 10.1016/J.TECHFORE.2013.03.003
  • ANTONELLI, C., COLOMBELLI, A., (2011), “The generation and exploitation of technological change: market value and total factor productivity”, The Journal of Technology Transfer, 36(4), 353-382, Springer, 10.1007/S10961-010-9198-Z

Book chapters

  • COLOMBELLI, A., ORSATTI, G., QUATRARO, F., (2017), “Entrepreneurship, technological knowledge and industrial heterogeneity: evidence from Italian NUTS3 regions”, in THERIN, F., APPIO, F. P., YOON, H., Handbook on Techno-Entrepreneurial Ecosystems, Edward Elgar,
  • CANTAMESSA, M., COLOMBELLI, A., (2016), “Il successo di una nuova impresa”, in CANTAMESSA, M., CARPANETO, A., CORTESE, C., Creare Startup di Successo, 54-70, Edizioni LSWR, 978-88-6895-278-5
  • COLOMBELLI, A., MOLINO, M., (2016), “L’imprenditoria come processo: dall’intenzione alla crescita”, in CANTAMESSA, M., CARPANETO, A., CORTESE, C., Creare Startup di Successo, 40-52, Edizioni LSWR, 978-88-6895-278-5
  • ANTONELLI, C., COLOMBELLI, A., (2011), “Globalization and directed technological change at the firm level: the European evidence”, in LIBECAP, G., Advances in the Study of Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and Economic Growth, 1-20, Emerald Publishing, 978-17-8052-394-1


  • CIFFOLILLI, A., COLOMBELLI, A., PRIMERI, E., REALE, E., SCELLATO, G., (2016), “An analysis of the role and engagement of universities with regard to participation in the Framework Programmes”

Working papers

  • CAVIGGIOLI, F., COLOMBELLI, A., DE MARCO, A., PAOLUCCI, E., (2018), “How venture capitalists evaluate young innovative company patent portfolios: empirical evidence from Europe”
  • COLOMBELLI, A., D’AMBROSIO, A., MELICIANI, V., QUATRARO, F., (2018), “Explaining the industrial variety of newborn firms: the role of cultural diversity”
  • COLOMBELLI, A., GRILLI, L., MINOLA, T., MRKAJIC, B., (2018), “Does institutional change foster creation of more competitive young innovative companies?”
  • COLOMBELLI, A., PAOLUCCI, E., RAGUSEO, E., (2018), “The determinants of digital start-ups formation: the role of digital entrepreneurial ecosystems in Italy”
  • COLOMBELLI, A., TUBIANA, M., (2018), “The moderating effect of social capital on the relationship between knowledge and new firm formation”


Entrepreneurship and Innovation Center (EIC)
Department of Management and Production Engineering (DIGEP)
Politecnico di Torino Duca degli Abruzzi, 24
10129 Torino (TO)