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Second Semester 
Teaching style
Lingua Insegnamento

Informazioni aggiuntive

Course Curriculum CFU Length(h)
[11/80]  MANAGEMENT [80/25 - Ord. 2018]  Direzione e Creazione d'Impresa 9 54
[11/80]  MANAGEMENT [80/40 - Ord. 2018]  Professionale 9 54


The course offers the basic knowledge and skills to face the main problems that family businesses meet to successful survive in the socio-economic scenario.

At the end of the lessons, students will be able to:

A.1. Acquiring relevant knowledge about principles and methods to define and develop an effective business strategy, particularly during the transgenerational passage and leadership transfer;
A.2. understanding family businesses in the international dimension;
A.3. knowing family business dynamics;
A.4. knowing strategic and managerial difficulties that differentiate family business to non-family business.

B.1. Developing managerial skills in family business context;
B.2. solving strategic and operational difficulties in family business topic;
B.3. understanding the phases of generational passage and suggesting strategies to plan;
B.4. identifying effective managerial decisions and choices and analyzing case studies, applying methods and methodologies to solve family business problems in terms of innovation, search of new markets, succession planning.

C.1 Developing critical ability and problem solving skills;
C.2. gathering and interpreting useful data to make judgement about role and relevance of family business in the international scenario;
C.3. integrating knowledge to manage complexity, making judgements based on limited or uncompleted information, including reflection on social and ethical themes that affect family business

D.1. Acquiring negotiation skills;
D.2. acquiring effective communication strategies to present personal viewpoints to colleagues, manager, consultants, entrepreneurs.

Developing learning ability to increase education and information through international academic and no academic papers


To positively attending the course, the student must possess the basic knowledge of management, organization and strategy. Specifically, students have to know the meanings of entrepreneurship and entrepreneur, business strategy, organizational structure and know the basic elements of the most important theories about the firm (Resource Based View, Stewardship Theory, etc.).
Basic knowledge will be evaluate through a simple test and possible gaps will be fill sharing additional materials and supporting students.


The course has divided in three parts: the first one, general, focuses on introductive concepts; the second one, specific, analyzes in depth strategies and management of family businesses; the third one, experimental, uses videos and other additional materials as suggested by the “flipped classroom” teaching method.

GENERAL PART (12 hours) Expected results: A.2. – A.3. – A.4.
1. Why family business? (2 h)
2. Trying to define family business concept (2 h)
2.1. The definitional debate (1h)
2.2. The most relevant definitions that exist in managerial literature (1h)
3. Theories in family business topic (2h)
4. The Psychological Ownership Theory (2h)
5. The classification of family businesses (2h)
5.1. The discriminants (1 h)
5.2. The main classifications (1 h)
6. Speech of a family business entrepreneur (2h)

SPECIFIC PART (28 hours) Expected results: A.1. – B.1. – B.2. – B.4. - E
1. The heterogeneity (2h)
2. The governance (evolution and dynamics) (2h)
3. Relational dynamics (6h)
2.1. Values (2h)
2.2. Conflicts (2h)
2.3. Commitment (2h)
3. The role of familiness (2h)
4. Woman in family businesses (2h)
5. Innovation and path dependence (2h)
6. Speech of entrepreneurs, opinion leaders and business tours (8h)
7. Case studies (4h)

EXPERIMENTAL PART (14 hours) Expected results: B.3. – C.1. – C.2. – C.3. – D.1. – D.2. - E
1. Planning the succession (8h)
In this part of the course, students have to analyze videos and other additional materials in order to discuss about them during the lessons.
2. Presentation of the project works (6h)

Teaching Methods

Teaching will be delivered in person. The lessons can be integrated with audiovisual materials and streaming.

The teaching methods are active and use traditional lessons, working group, exercises, project work, videos, empirical evidences, and business tours. Particularly, the last part of the lessons will be manage through the suggestions stemming from the “flipped classroom” philosophy. The traditional lesson has substituted by collaborative and interactive activities.
Lessons’ attendance is not compulsory but has suggested.

The teaching will be delivered simultaneously both in presence and online, thus outlining a mixed teaching that can be enjoyed in university classrooms but also at a distance. At the beginning of the semester, each student can opt, with a binding choice, for face-to-face or distance teaching. Depending on the availability of the classrooms and the number of students who will opt for the attendance mode, there may be a shift for actual classroom access.

Verification of learning

The didactic methodologies chosen for the lessons determine the definition of two distinct ways - between attending and non-attending students - for verifying the assessment.
For attending students:

The assessment jointly takes into account different elements:

1. Result of the activities proposed during the lessons - Weight 20%
2. Individual project work - Weight 80%

1. The activities proposed during the course will consist of preparing 3 short papers on the topics discussed in the general part of the lessons, and the delivery of the same must occur by the end of the course.
These activities will make it possible to verify the expected results indicated in points A.2. - A.3. - A.4.
2. The project work will relate to the in-depth study of a specific topic that will be communicated during the lessons. Students will be invited to study the existing national and international literature on the subject and verify, through an empirical analysis, what happens in the reality of family businesses. Each student will present their project work during the last three days of class (6 hours) through the round table discussion and will be invited to present a poster of their work. All information will be provided during the course and made immediately available on the teacher page and in the shared folder created at the beginning of the lessons.
This test will allow verifying the achievement of the expected results indicated in points A.1. - A.3. - A.4. - B.1 - B.2 - B.3. - B.4. C.1. - C.2. - C.3. - D.1. - D.2. - E

For non-attending students:
- Written exam

The written exam will consist of:
- n. 6 open questions that will focus on the topics covered in the general part and the specific-operational part.



Floris M., Tronci R., Dessì C., Dettori A. (2019). Imprenditorialità e imprese familiari. La sfida del cambiamento. Editoriale Scientifica

Dessì C., Floris M., 2017. Le imprese familiari. Fisionomia di un fenomeno in evoluzione, Franco Angeli. Milano

Other suggested books:

- Cristiano E., Sicoli G. (2012) Evoluzione e dinamiche di sviluppo nelle imprese familiari. Un approccio economico-aziendale. Franco Angeli, Milano

- Baschieri G. (2014). L’impresa familiare. Fattori di successo ed evidenze empiriche sulle performance. Franco Angeli, Milano

- May P., Inghelfinger T. (2012) Le aziende familiari. Strategie per il successo. Hoepli, Milano

- Cuneo G. (ed) (2016) Lettere dal futuro. Generazioni di imprenditori si raccontano. Egea, Milano

- Di Toma P., Montanari S. (2013) Corporate governance e rinnovamento strategico nelle imprese familiari. Franco Angeli, Milano

More Information

Slides of the first and the second part of the course will be available before the lessons in order to facilitate students in understanding and acquiring concepts and to involve them in interactive activities.
Audios, videos and other paper of the third part of the course will be available during the second part of the lessons. This is due in order to allow students to utilize them after the acquisition of basic concepts necessary to understand topics that are more technical.

Other information will be available on the official website.

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