Mapping data sources for the analysis of contracting out in Italian local governments
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In Italy, since early 1990s contracting-out is a consolidated practice in local policy making, and a recurrent tool for the delivery of public services, especially in some policy areas (e.g. services of general economic interest, social services etc.). Yet, in spite of the mushrooming of open source platforms concerning the organization and working of public administrations, and several disclosure requirements set out by recent national regulations, the phenomenon is still poorly understood, and so are its consequences. Starting from this premise, the article aims at providing the reader with a reasoned review of data sources available today for the knowledge of contracting-out at the local level in Italy, pinpointing major strengths and weaknesses for empirical analysis.