Historical Legacy and Policy Effectiveness: The Long‐Term Influence of Preunification Borders in Italy

23 Pages Posted: 29 May 2020

See all articles by Giovanna D'Adda

Giovanna D'Adda

University of Milan - Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods (DEMM)

Guido de Blasio

Bank of Italy

Date Written: March 2017

Abstract

This paper investigates the interplay between cultural traditions and policy effectiveness. It explores the differential impact of a large development program (Cassa per il Mezzogiorno), implemented for four decades, starting in the 1950s, to stimulate convergence between Italy's south and the more developed north, on municipalities with different histories. Namely, we consider a sample of municipalities located on either side of the historical border of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, whose legacy is considered, from Putnam onwards, to be a prime‐facie cause of Southern Italy's underdevelopment. Having been part of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies is associated with a negative impact of development policies, but only when the allocation of development funds through the Cassa per il Mezzogiorno suffered from low quality of governance and was driven by political considerations rather than by efficiency ones.

Suggested Citation

D'Adda, Giovanna and de Blasio, Guido, Historical Legacy and Policy Effectiveness: The Long‐Term Influence of Preunification Borders in Italy (March 2017). Journal of Regional Science, Vol. 57, Issue 2, pp. 319-341, 2017, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3610317 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jors.12283

Giovanna D'Adda (Contact Author)

University of Milan - Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods (DEMM) ( email )

Via Conservatorio, 7
Milan, 20122
Italy

Guido De Blasio

Bank of Italy ( email )

Via Nazionale 91
00184 Roma
Italy

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