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Italy’s North-South Divide Yet Again: Some New Evidence from Firms, Sectors and Territories

Pier Asso (), Sebastiano Nerozzi () and Vito Pipitone
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Sebastiano Nerozzi: Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore

Rivista Internazionale di Scienze Sociali, 2021, vol. 129, issue 2, 91-124

Abstract: The recent literature on the North-South divide in Italy has refuted a homogeneous reading and treatment of the "Southern question" and has recalled the importance of deep intra-South disparities. This paper contributes to this line of research, offering some descriptions of intra-South disparities. We first make use of data at the firm level pertaining to the manufacturing sector between 2008 and 2019 to show how productive units differ within each macro-area according to their main balance-sheet indicators and to technical efficiency, both in terms of their average and variability. Secondly, we use different data available at the provincial level to assess the territorial disparities existing with regard to crucial indicators (exports, patents, infrastructure, education, social capital etc.). Overall, this paper shows how relevant intra-South variability is and how manifold disparities may be intertwined in a very complex way, shaping the dynamics of territories, sectors, and firms.

Keywords: Regional inequalities; Italy; Dualism; Firms; Technical efficiency (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D22 N94 O18 O40 P48 R11 R12 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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Handle: RePEc:vep:journl:y:2021:v:129:i:2:p:91-124