Interest Groups and Government Spending in Italy, 1876-1913

32 Pages Posted: 30 Jul 2009

See all articles by Nadia Fiorino

Nadia Fiorino

University of L'Aquila - Faculty of Economics

Roberto Ricciuti

University of Verona - Department of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Date Written: July 1, 2009

Abstract

In the last two decades of the XIX century Italy became an industrial country. Historians maintain that this process was affected by the action of some interest groups that pursued both state protection from competition and specific public expenditure programs. Starting from the economic literature of interest groups, this paper attempts to empirically investigate the role of the interest groups in public expenditure decisions in Italy from 1876 to 1913. We argue that a proper indicator of the role of interest groups is their output. The analysis suggests that government spending was sensitive to the preferences of heavy industry rather then those of textile and cereal cultivators. We therefore highlight the role of the political process in setting economic policy at the early stages of Italian development.

Keywords: special interest groups, public expenditure, Italian economic history

JEL Classification: H11, N43

Suggested Citation

Fiorino, Nadia and Ricciuti, Roberto, Interest Groups and Government Spending in Italy, 1876-1913 (July 1, 2009). CESifo Working Paper Series No. 2722. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1441155

Nadia Fiorino

University of L'Aquila - Faculty of Economics ( email )

Roio Poggio, 67040
Italy

Roberto Ricciuti (Contact Author)

University of Verona - Department of Economics ( email )

Via dell'Artigliere, 8
37129 Verona
Italy

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

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