Second Welfare

Percorsi di secondo welfare is a research and information Laboratory linked to the University of Milan. Thanks to the support of important institutional partners the Laboratory led by Franca Maino aims to:

📚 Develop Knowledge
It explores, documents and disseminates second welfare trends, experiences and good practices to fuel an empirically based, plural and accessible debate.

🔎 Study Welfare Models
It collects data and empirical evidence to outline new intervention models thanks to a consolidated research methodology in the field of social policies.

🎯 Drive Actions
It supports and supports organizations in strategic planning aimed at implementing innovative initiatives and designing the welfare of the future.

The concept of “second welfare”

“Second welfare” refers to a mix of social protection and social investment programs which are not funded by the State, but provided instead by a wide range of economic and social actors, linked to territories and local communities, but open to trans-local partnerships and collaborations. Read more.


The Laboratory seeks to promote a “virtuous nesting” between first and second welfare, that will ultimately be able to tackle the challenges posed by demographic trends and the emergence of new social needs, and worsened by the present financial situation. Our research encompasses several areas of the social provision, with a specific focus on the non-public actors that increasingly play a role in the welfare arena, and the dynamics that determine their growing involvement.

English Section

Percorsi di secondo welfare has a English section in order to provide articles translated and original international contributions as well as to promote the debate on second welfare and the exchange of best practices. You can read them below.

Younger generations are increasingly sensitive to sustainable development issues but, at least in Italy, they practically have limited political weight. However, creating conditions that are conducive to listening to their requests and adopting policies that put them into practice is essential.
Transport policies have different consequences for men and women, yet the gender variable is rarely considered when designing a public measure. In this case, however, environmental and social sustainability go in the same direction.
In Germany, as in Italy, Long Term Care was strictly hit by Covid-19. During the pandemic, the German government allocated emergency funds - called “Corona premiums” - to cope with evident gaps in the Long Term Care sector, such as those related to shortage in nursing and health personnel. That of healthcare personnel must be the priority to work on, Professor Heinz Rothgang told Secondo Welfare.
During the pandemic the swedish government issued new guidelines to address gaps in Long Term Care sector and is now working to improve integration between national and local levels. The issue is considered a priority by voters and therefore is central in the political agenda. Paula Blomqvist, Professor at Uppsala University tells us so.
Southern Italy is the poorest one in terms of GDP per capita. Sicily and Calabria are characterized by a poor welfare system and are affected by a social plague: mafias. This article, part of a series written by the students of GPS Master at the University of Milan, aims to investigate how social movements from the bottom - such as anti-mafia associations - contribute to improve welfare systems in those regions.
Venture Philanthropy adopts the know-how of the business and market tradition for social purpose and to achieve social impact. This approach is crucial for the future of social investment. How? We analyze these aspects in this article by Izacco Scattolin Neto, part of a series written by Master’s students in Global Politics and Society at the University of Milan.
The pandemic challenged traditional education systems and new start-ups introduced innovative solutions. Could this challenge be an opportunity? In the following article, we discuss the role of Digital Social Innovation in the field of education. In the light of Covid-19 challenges and opportunities for educational innovation, we focus on two European start-ups: WeSchool and Teacherly.
The economic recession caused by Covid-19 has revealed the fragility of our socioeconomic systems and the importance of resilient welfare states. Children’s education, care and wellbeing have been at the centre of public debate. The Next Generation EU represents a unique opportunity to promote education and childhood care and, in the same time, to improve women’s employment.
On 11th December 2019, the European Commission published a Communication on "The European Green Deal": a new growth strategy that aims to transform the EU into a fair and prosperous society, with a modern, resource-efficient and competitive economy. The article investigates if and to what extent the "Green Deal" represents a suitable framework to implement a "just transition" towards low-carbon economies and societies.
Immigration and asylum became tremendously contested in Italy over the last decade and the climax was reached in 2018 with the “Security Decree I”, which contributed to further deteriorate the already deficient standards of first reception facilities. Since then, the most “virtuous” components of Italy’s asylum system have been reduced and the “burden of integration” fell on municipalities. How did virtuous cities respond?
We interviewed Guido Palazzo, Professor of Business Ethics at HEC, University of Lausanne, about the role of strategic philanthropy in promoting social change. FOBs promote impact assessment, nourish the social fabric and operate in a long-term perspective. Indeed, Palazzo’s research deals with corporate responsibility in global supply chains, the mechanisms of (un)ethical decision making in organizations, the fight against organized crime and the impact of storytelling on behavior.
Since 2019, a special section of “Stato e Mercato” journal focuses on how economies and welfare systems have been adapted to the common challenges of post-industrialization, financialization, ICT revolution and the knowledge economy. The first issue that opened 2020 was an insight about “Institutions, politics and models of capitalism” divided in three articles and two comments from the annual seminar organized by the journal. Here a summary of the issues and topics highlighted discussed.