After too much time, I have just finished a draft paper on the long run impact of land reform in Italy, probably the first place-based policy in the country. I have found a positive effect on education in the medium and in the long run and a positive, although not always significant, effect on entrepreneurship and industrialization.
Abstract: Abstract The role of wealth inequality for local development has long been neglected, although some literature has pointed out its relevance in explaining entrepreneurial and education investment. Among the typologies of assets composing individuals’ wealth, land is of paramount importance in underdeveloped economies specialized in agriculture. Land reforms in terms of redistribution of land ownership are hence expected to boost development through an increase in entrepreneurship rate and human capital stock. In this paper, I consider land reform in Italy which took place in 1950s in some specific areas all across the country. By adopting an Oaxaca-Blinder regression method and using data at city-level on the implementation of the reform for Puglia-Basilicata-Molise in the South of Italy and, as robustness checks, for Maremma in the Center and Delta del Po in the North, I have found a positive impact of land redistribution on human capital accumulation and a less significant impact on employment and firm location.