MILAN, Italy — Bocconi University, one of Italy’s most prestigious schools, is partnering with Gucci to establish the Gucci Research Lab.
The three-year research project will explore how factors like a start-up mentality, employee empowerment and risk-taking can lead to performance and growth for companies in the luxury industry. A team of four professors will undertake dedicated research on topics such as the above — their annual findings will be published in a publicly-available paper.
“[The initiative] is designed to reveal important insights that large and small companies can learn from,” said Marco Bizzarri, president and chief executive of Gucci, in a statement. “More than ever before, a company’s culture can be the differentiating factor in terms of competitive advantage.”
“The aim [is] to identify and study the core trends that are defining the way in which organisations are evolving in the 21st century, with a special focus on the luxury industry,” added Gianmario Verona, rector of Bocconi University.
Founded in 1902, the Milan-based private university is renowned for its research facilities and MBE programmes. This new partnership is part of an ongoing relationship between the institution and the luxury house: Gucci finds new talent annually through the university's Luxury Talent and Corporate Associate programmes, both of which place students in internship positions within Gucci. Following the launch of the new research lab, Gucci has been named a strategic partner of Bocconi University.
It's not the first time the Italian luxury house has partnered with an educational facility: earlier this year, Gucci announced a masters course in retail management in partnership with Polimoda. It makes sense for Gucci to lead the charge on fashion's future innovation — the Italian fashion house continues to spearhead growth at its parent company Kering. The brand’s third quarter revenue grew by 28.3 percent, while sales rose by 49.4 percent.