IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The big players in Italian local public services. Constraints, opportunities and growth strategies


  • Magda Bianco

    () (Banca d'Italia)

  • Daniela Mele

    () (Banca d'Italia)

  • Paolo Sestito

    () (Banca d'Italia)


One of the objectives of the reforms and liberalization of the last 15 years in local public services was to reduce the traditional fragmentation of production. This was to be achieved through restructuring that reduced inefficiencies and made it more possible to exploit economies of scale, thereby stimulating the emergence of national “big players”. In this paper we analyze the evolution and current position of the largest operators that have emerged in the different sectors of local public services. The aim is to identify factors that have helped or hindered the growth process. Through an analysis of twelve among the largest businesses we identify four evolutionary paths. In our view the main drivers have been: a) a presence in the energy sector (mainly due to its high profitability); b) a favourable local political framework; and c) a tradition of efficient internal organization and independence of local politics.

Suggested Citation

  • Magda Bianco & Daniela Mele & Paolo Sestito, 2008. "The big players in Italian local public services. Constraints, opportunities and growth strategies," Questioni di Economia e Finanza (Occasional Papers) 26, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  • Handle: RePEc:bdi:opques:qef_26_08

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item


    local public services; liberalization; growth strategies;

    JEL classification:

    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
    • L21 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Business Objectives of the Firm
    • L25 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Performance
    • L90 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - General

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bdi:opques:qef_26_08. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.