Overview and recent developments

In September 2017, the Italian government introduced a new set of procedures for regulatory impact assessment (RIA), ex post evaluation, stakeholder engagement and regulatory planning. Ministries have to prepare a simplified RIA, providing a first assessment of expected impacts and a justification for not conducting a full RIA for low impact proposals, which is reviewed by the Department of Legal and Legislative Affairs (DAGL) within the Presidency of the Council of Ministers, whose gatekeeping role has also been strengthened. Ministries are also required to publish twice a year a 6-month legislative programme, highlighting planned RIAs and consultations. The programmes are to be posted on the central government website and the website of individual ministries. New guidelines to support public consultation aimed at enhancing transparency and participation were introduced in 2017 and new guidance on RIA and ex post evaluation was introduced in February 2018. Ex post evaluations have become more commonplace across a wider range of policy areas since 2015.

The challenge ahead is to “connect the dots” to develop a culture of evidence-based user-centric policy making. For instance, ex post evaluations could be more systematically planned when preparing RIAs for major legislation and quality filters and advice could continue to be strengthened. Consultation could become more systematic and consistent across different ministries and used to understand citizens’ preferences, gather evidence on implementation options (early stage) and gaps (evaluation).

Institutional setup for regulatory oversight

The Department of Legal and Legislative Affairs (DAGL) of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers reviews the quality of RIAs and ex post evaluations. It can issue a negative opinion to the State Secretary to the Presidency if the quality of RIA is deemed inadequate and before the draft legislation is presented to the Council. The DAGL also validates planned RIAs and consultations included in the 6-month legislative programmes, proposes changes to the regulatory policy framework, promotes training, provides technical guidance and reports annually to Parliament on regulatory quality tools. An Impact Assessment Independent Unit (IAIU) supports the DAGL in reviewing ex ante and ex post evaluations. The IAIU is composed of external experts serving a four-year term, selected through an open and competitive process. An Impact Assessment Office in the Senate conducts ex post evaluations of selected legislation. The Committee on legislation in the Chamber of Deputies checks the effectiveness of simplification principles in draft legislation. The Council of State checks quality of RIA and stakeholder engagement practices and evaluates regulatory policy.

Indicators of Regulatory Policy and Governance (iREG): Italy, 2018

Notes: The more regulatory practices as advocated in the OECD Recommendation on Regulatory Policy and Governance a country has implemented, the higher its iREG score. The indicators on stakeholder engagement and RIA for primary laws only cover those initiated by the executive (88% of all primary laws in Italy).

Source: Indicators of Regulatory Policy and Governance Surveys 2014 and 2017,


Location of regulatory oversight functions: Italy

Regulatory oversight functions

Centre of government

Ministry of Finance, Economy or Treasury

Ministry of Justice

Other ministries

Non-departmental body


Office of the Attorney General

Supreme audit institution

Part of the judiciary

Quality control of…


Stakeholder engagement

Ex post evaluation

Identifying policy areas where regulation can be made more effective

Systematic improvement of regulatory policy

Co-ordination of regulatory policy

Guidance, advice and support

Scrutiny of legal quality

Notes: ⚫ indicates that a given regulatory oversight function is covered by at least one body in a particular location. Data present the situation as of 31 December 2017 and do not reflect changes that may have taken place in 2018.

Source: Survey questions on regulatory oversight bodies, Indicators of Regulatory Policy and Governance Survey 2017,

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