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The Italian welfare state in a European perspectiveA comparative analysis$
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Ugo Ascoli and Emmanuele Pavolini

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781447316886

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447316886.001.0001

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Care policies in Italy between a national frozen landscape and local dynamism

Care policies in Italy between a national frozen landscape and local dynamism

Chapter:
(p.133) Five Care policies in Italy between a national frozen landscape and local dynamism
Source:
The Italian welfare state in a European perspective
Author(s):

Marco Albertini

Emmanuele Pavolini

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781447316886.003.0005

In recent decades socio-demographical changes have put under increasing pressure that part of the welfare state that deals with care policies, in particular child and elderly care. Italy has been traditionally characterized by a strong familistic approach which has been a great barrier to the expansion of care policies. This chapter describes and interprets what has happened and why Italy has so far missed the occasion to strengthen its public social care, while other countries from Continental and Southern Europe have tried to do so. Nevertheless if, on the one hand, “a frozen landscape” is what best describes the limited policy innovation promoted by the central State, on the other the last two decades have witnessed significant processes of “innovation from below”. Both local public institutions, enterprises and families have tried to implement new care policies and/or find new welfare mix equilibriums in order to meet the emerging care needs of the population. However the recent economic crisis and the austerity plans have also contributed to weakening the processes of “modernization from below”.

Keywords:   Elderly care, Child care, Family policy, Long-term care, Welfare State, Italy

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