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The impact of contemporary industrial practices on inter-organisational confidence in the subcontracting of luxury


Subcontractors in the luxury industry are facing major changes stemming from a capitalist realignment of brands and the globalization of activities. These developments have placed trust at the center of interorganizational relations, a core consequence of which for subcontractors is a shift from an isolated know-how of production towards a cooperative know-how of production and creation. Brands have optimized the development of new, ever more complex products by massively outsourcing to subcontractors through extended logistical chains, based on progressive co-creation and the modularization of production processes. The co-construction of projects that perpetually self-adjust based on intangible and sensory data and with tacit, informal, and non-codified knowledge is made possible by geographic concentration and organizational proximity, both of which are favorable to active interfacing. Cooperative work in networks is today firmly established among subcontractors, who coalesce around a pivotal company that acts as the network core and which we can view as a social entrepreneur. Subcontractors make themselves complementary and, thus, indivisible. Mobilization within such networks, to which access is not formalized, allows for greater freedom in adaptation and reaction, as well as providing formal mechanisms of protection and regulation, institutional support, and governance adapted to specific and unprecedented demands.

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