Policy proposals aimed at introducing a modern minimum income scheme in Italy, complementing a cash benefit with a social and work activation component, are typically met with skepticism due to the existence, in the Italian context, of paramount structural obstacles. These have to do with irregular and underground employment, high unemployment, low legality of the socioeconomic context and low institutional capability of the administrative networks vested with the task of administering the benefit and managing the insertion programmes. Those advocating for the introduction of a minimum income scheme in Italy must therefore bear the burden of showing how such problems can be solved. This constitutes the aim of this paper, which singles out the most critical aspects connected to the introduction of a minimum income scheme in the Italian context and devises some policy proposals on how to tackle them.
Keywords: Minimum income; Poverty; Social assistance; Welfare state; Institutional capabilities; Unemployment benefits