Working Paper Ircres-CNR 01/2015                               
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Politiche di sostegno al settore agroindustriale in Piemonte: una valutazione controfattuale

[Supporting agro-food enterprises in Piedmont: a counterfactual valuation]

Sara Pavone, Elena Ragazzi, Lisa Sella*


National Research Council of Italy

Research Institute on Sustainable Economic Growth

CNR-IRCrES Collegio Carlo Alberto - via Real Collegio, n. 30
10024 Moncalieri (Torino) – ITALY






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Abstract: This paper aims at analysing the role played by the Rural Development Programme (RDP) in supporting the Piedmont (Italy) agro-food industry, i.e. that part of the agricultural production chain characterised by the highest added value. This is a first attempt to extend the previous in itinere evaluation to an ex-post quasi experimental counterfactual evaluation of the subsidies’ net impact. Since the agri-food industry is characterised by an extreme variety of firms, and having observed that the treated firms do not share the characteristics of the average population. The counterfactual group has been selected by adopting the coarsened exact matching technique, a quite recent imbalance-reducing matching method. The final results do suggest, above all, a stabilizing effect of the subsidy in a period characterized by a sever worldwide economic crisis. However, since results are quite uncertain, we expect that on-going further research (on the data-base, the model, and balance sheet indicators) will lead to stronger conclusion on the effectiveness of the policy. Nonetheless, this exercise already shows that the selected matching set and methodology, the chosen timing, and the quality of the available data do strongly influence the impact analysis.

Keywords: policy evaluation, agro-food industry, counterfactual analysis, coarsened exact matching.

JEL Codes: L52; L66; C49; D04