This article looks at the major historical developments in the Italian labor market, with specific attention given to the ‘Biagi Law’ that attempted to reform it in 2003. The name refers to Professor Marco Biagi, who was advising the government on the reforms at the time. The article will explore whether the objectives of the reforms were eventually achieved. This question will be addressed using an historical-descriptive methodology that focuses on the social and political context. The article concludes that the Biagi Law is only part of a much longer reform process that has been unfolding since at least the mid-1980s. This process is nowhere near completion today, and, especially in the case of the Biagi Law, has met with much resistance from state and non-state actors. The article uses data on unemployment figures in Italy and in the OECD in the decade from 2000 to 2010.
Keywords : Biagi Law, White Paper on the Labor Market, Italian labor law, Labor Market Flexibility, European Employment Strategy