The role played by RISSDA (as RISS was called up to 1933) in its first years of publication goes much beyond the sheer publication of interesting articles. The argument of this essay is that by inserting the Italian Social Catholic intellectuals into the network of the European Catholic Social Movement, RISSDA allowed the elaboration and diffusion across Italy of ideas that were proving effective in contrasting conservative and socialist solutions to the challenges of the time. But above all, it allowed the Italian social Catholics of the time to leave a legacy that was resumed after fascism and supported the DC positions in building up a new constitution and in devising the policies for reconstruction.
Between the 19th and 20th centuries, the growing social question prompted Italian Catholic circles to reflect on capitalism, its results, and the correction of its dysfunctions. A crucial step came with the rise of neo-Thomism and the work of Luigi Taparelli d’Azeglio, who saw subsidiarity as a fundamental principle in shaping state intervention. Two approaches then arose: one linked to Curci that was more historically and theoretically based, and the other, with Liberatore among its main exponents, more focused on an analysis from the viewpoint of natural law. While Curci was aware of the difficulties of a solidaristic solution to the distributive disparities among the social classes, Liberatore interpreted solidarity in terms of charity. This latter approach prevailed, also influencing the formulation of Rerum Novarum. A decisive input came from Toniolo, who presented a more articulated vision of the solidarity principle and contributed to the organic formulation of the subsidiarity principle.
In the 1950s, the structural transformation of the Italian economy from mainly agricultural to mainly industrial paved the way for the country’s new role in the world economy and in world politics. Via export credit, medium-term credit institutions like Mediobanca played an important role in this process. The evolution of Mediobanca’s export credit in the 1950-1960s shows Italy’s projection beyond the Iron Curtain and towards the Global South, consistent with the Cold War’s ‘‘de´tente’’, Italy’s ‘‘neo-atlanticism’’, and foreign aid to the Third World. At the crossroads between economics, politics, and international relations, the topic is framed by general issues such as the Cold War and decolonization, as well as both European and world integration.
Consistent profit making is a factor that sustains investment and encourages growth in business. This study was prompted by the need to examine the performance of the rice milling industry in Southwest Nigeria based on profit efficiency and reveals that the annual cost of labour and energy incurred by rice mills is high. The percentage of installed capacity utilized was 56.9% in the study area and the average profit efficiency was low (39.0%), with no significant variation among states (p>0.05). The state of Ekiti showed the highest (49.2%) profit efficiency, while Oyo had the lowest (15.5%). The age and milling experience of the manager/owner and the per day milling capacity of their machines were found to influence the profit efficiency of rice mills in the study area. Boosting rice production in order to enhance the capacity utilization of the rice milling industry and the adoption of strategies to reduce labour costs are recommended to ensure the sustainability of the rice milling industry in Nigeria.