Discretion and Supplier Selection in Public Procurement (2020), with Cristina Giorgiantonio, Sauro Mocetti and Tommaso Orlando, forthcoming at the Journal of Law, Economics and Organization (working paper version here).

Media:; VoxEU.

Let the Voters Choose Women (2020),  with Alessandra Casarico, Paola Profeta, and Giulia Savio, Journal of Public Economics, forthcoming.


Political Contributions and Public Procurement: Evidence from Lithuania (2020), Journal of the European Economic Association, 18(2), 541-582. Working paper version here.

Media: Veidas; Verslo Zinios; Verslo Zinios;

Gender Quotas and the Quality of Politicians (2014), with Piera Bello, Alessandra Casarico and Paola Profeta, Journal of Public Economics, 118: 62-74.

Media: InGenere

Affirmative Action and the Power of the Elderly (2015), with Alessandra Casarico and Paola Profeta, CESifo Economic Studies, 61(1): 148-164.


Opening the Black-Box of Managerial Talent, with Giulia Bovini and Sauro Mocetti.

This paper studies the role of managerial talent in determining corporate performance. For this purpose, we build a matched firm-director panel dataset for the universe of limited liability companies in Italy, tracking directors across different firms over time. We measure managerial talent by their ability to boost firms’ total factor productivity, estimated with a two-way fixed effects model. First, we find that managerial talent influences a number of corporate features conducive to positive firm performance. Namely, we show that talented managers are better able to forecast the firm performance; they diminish their middle-management layers and move towards highly-skilled workers at all organization levels; they are also associated with the adoption of good managerial practices and advanced technology. Second, and more importantly, we find complementarities between managerial ability and the other key internal drivers of productivity. While the workforce human capital, the use of good managerial practices and the adoption of new technologies do boost firm productivity on their own, there are synergies between each of them and the presence of talented management. Overall, our results indicate that able leaders are valuable to the firm not only because of good decisions they make, but also because of how such decisions are put in practice.

Trainspotting: Board Appointments in Private Firms, with Egle Karmaziene, Bank of Italy working papers n. 1278 (submitted).

This paper examines how the size of the corporate directors’ labor market affects board appointments in Italian private limited liability firms. As an exogenous shock to a firm’s access to potential non-local directors, we exploit the gradual expansion of the high-speed railway network that improves intercity commuting. We find that the non-local supply of directors increases the positive assortative matching between directors and firms: high-quality firms improve the quality of their boards, while low-quality firms reduce it. We also show that director quality is positively associated with firm growth and productivity, and negatively associated with the probability of default.

Media: LSE Business Review; VoxEU.

Board composition and performance of state-owned enterprises: Evidence from a natural experiment, with Mario Cannella, Sauro Mocetti and Giacomo Roma, in progress.

Corporate governance and firm crisis management, with Giacomo Rodano, in progress.


Ownership structure and governance of Italian companies: new evidence and effects on performance, with Elisa Brodi and Sauro Mocetti, Bank of Italy Occasional Papers, No. 514.

Media: (06/06/2020); (17/06/2020).