INTERCONTINENTAL NETWORK FOR THE PROMOTION OF SOCIAL SOLIDARITY ECONOMY
Immediately following World War II, Emilia-Romagna was one of the last regions in Italy in terms of standard of living. Today, Emilia-Romagna is one of the top 20 most prosperous regions in Europe. Emilia- Romagna has the highest per capita income in Italy and the most equitable distribution of wealth: wages are high, and the difference between rich and poor is lower than anywhere else on the peninsula. Unemployment is just 3.7%, hovering above 2% in some of the more prosperous cities A region of just 4 million people, there are 300,000 firms, with an average firm size of 5 employees, slightly higher in manufacturing. Large firms, employing more than 250 people, make up less than 1% of total firms. Emilia-Romagna's manufacturing base is very strong, and has continued to expand over the last two decades, despite trends to the contrary in other advanced economies. This has allowed for the development of an advanced service sector that, connected to manufacturing, is a significant source of value-added and the creation of good jobs.