Rivista di Politica Economica

In recent decades, the Italian phenomenon has often come under close scrutiny as specialists of the field attempted to understand the \vorkings of an economic systerm perceived as being somewhat strange; foreign commentators in particular incessantly wavered be- tween forewarnings of inevitable crises and decline, and resounding praise of unexpected and surprising succes. However, harsh and one-sidedvalue judgements must be avoided if the Italian system is tobe truiy understood. Instead of glancing briefly at the cover and table of contents, one must carefully scan each page of Italy’s complex, intricate and often contradictory development.

In reality, the apparent political instability coexists alongside a stability of government, international alliances and internal affairs unexampled in other Western democracies, and better epitomized in the Japanese experience.

The great distance between Italy and the other already indus- trialized countries with which it began this long phase of postwar development, the persistent structural weaknesses prevailing during these decades and the recurrent economic crises are matched by a long term performance that afforded the country a stable niche among the seven leading industrial economies…continua a leggere

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