Abstract and Keywords
After World War II industry underwent a process of rapid development, underpinned by the growth of big business, both private and public. The state extensively supported this process, seeing big business as the main force for Italy’s modernization. This gave rise to a system of deep links between politics and industry, giving business a political character. Starting in the 1970s, this industrial model showed signs of crisis, proving unable to reform. Hopes that European integration could act as an external stimulus for reform proved unfounded: the system based on big businesses supported by extensive state involvement has all but disappeared. Although the early 2000s has seen the flourishing of medium-sized industry heavily oriented toward exports, Italy no longer has an overarching model of industrial organization. It is unclear whether an industrial model based on these new companies can replace the old one without a large loss of industrial capacity.
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