Italian Economic Journal

, Volume 4, Issue 3, pp 385–419 | Cite as

The Road to Permanent Work in Italy: “It’s Getting Dark, Too Dark to See”

  • Maria Giovanna BoscoEmail author
  • Elisa Valeriani
Research Paper - Italy and Europe


Building on previous research, we address the debated question of whether temporary contractual arrangements are a stepping stone toward more stable and definitive forms of employment. In particular, we investigate the different performance of three types of contracts, fixed term, parasubordinate and apprenticeship contracts. In this study we prepared and reclassified a large observational dataset and applied propensity score estimates to a sample of over 600,000 workers observed through 2008–2015. Although the rationale behind labour market flexibilization has been partially successful in creating occupation in the country, this came at the cost of more insecure jobs and with workers being trapped into a loop of perennial renewals. Our analysis contributes effectively to the exploration of flexible term contract’ role as stepping-stone—or bottle necks—with respect to open ended contracts. We find no stepping-stone effect for fixed-term and parasubordinate contracts, together with a (weak) stepping-stone effect for apprenticeships.


Dependent labour Labour market contracts Stepping-stone 

JEL Classification

J20 J21 

Supplementary material

40797_2018_77_MOESM1_ESM.docx (74 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 73 kb)


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Copyright information

© Società Italiana degli Economisti (Italian Economic Association) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Dipartimento di GiurisprudenzaUniversità degli Studi di Modena e Reggio-EmiliaModenaItaly

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