Keywords: Obituary; Public Policy; Cultural Economics.
The article tells of two different moments in the life of Paolo Leon. The first concerns the years of intense political participation in the Italian Socialist Party (PSI). The second one concerns Paolo Leon as an economist of culture and founder of CLES at the end of the 1980s. Leon as a politician, from the beginning of the '70s until the outbreak from the PSI in 1981 (due to the Leon' critique to Craxi and the Eni-Petromin case), participated in an extraordinarily fruitful period. The article reports countless episodes where Leon has been able to bring to the socialist party (and also to the communist party) innovative ideas in the economic, political and trade union fields. The same kind of innovation the author would have found years later in Leon as an economist of culture. The author also remembers the Leon contribution in the development economics and the Coast-benefit analysis.