The Taranto steelworks has held and continues to hold an important place in the history of Italian industrialisation. Consequently, it has been the object of numerous studies. This article examines a selection of recent publications on the Taranto steelworks and, more broadly, on the history of Italian state-owned companies and the IRI (Industrial Reconstruction Institute).
The purpose is to reflect on the role of the steel industry in the Italian economy, on stateowned enterprises and their relationship with politics and on the policies pursued after the Second World War in order to reduce the gap between the North and the South. Finally, the article will discuss public debates on these topics. In doing so, it places the various decisions and the different positions on the issue in a historical context. In conclusion, the article identifies a number of questions that have yet to receive an appropriate answer.