European Foundation
for the Improvement of
Living and Working Conditions

The tripartite EU agency providing knowledge to assist
in the development of better social, employment and
work-related policies

EU PolicyWatch

Database of national-level policy measures

Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure IT-2007-14/2736 – measures in Italy

Unit for the management of disputes concerning enterprises facing difficulties

Unità per la Gestione delle Vertenze delle Imprese in Crisi (UGV)

Country Italy , applies nationwide
Time period Open ended, started on 04 April 2007
Context Restructuring Support Instruments
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Ensuring business continuity and support for essential services
– Smoothing frictions or reallocation of workers
Author Lisa Dorigatti (University of Milan) and Eurofound
Measure added 11 July 2022 (updated 07 November 2022)

Background information

Through Act No. 3-03638, published on 4 April 2017, in session No. 800, the Unit for the Management of Disputes of Enterprises in Crisis (UGV), an operational branch of the enterprise crisis structure, is established at the Ministry of Economic Development. The task of the UGV is to safeguard and consolidate the employment levels of enterprises and it must also perform a preventive function, aimed at preventing the worsening of crisis situations.

Content of measure

Unit for the management of disputes concerning enterprises facing (Unità per la Gestione delle Vertenze delle Imprese in Crisi, UGV) is the operational branch of the Business Crisis Unit ('Struttura per le crisi d’Impresa', SCI) of the Ministry of Economic Development. Established in 2008, SCI develops tools for fighting the decline of the Italian production system, both related to individual companies and to specific areas or productive sectors. Its actions are targeted at identifying and implementing industrial policy measures, as well as at the reindustrialisation and conversion of areas and productive sectors experiencing difficulties, and to deal with companies facing economic difficulties (risk of closure and/or dismissal of a significant number of workers).

UGV, which is staffed with crisis management experts from the Ministry of Economic Development and the Ministry of Labour and Social Policies, promotes meetings (the so called 'tavoli di crisi') with enterprises experiencing difficulties for developing measures to prevent and face business crises and safeguard employment. Beyond concerned companies, these meetings involve all the actors concerned, such as social partners and institutions (also at the local level). 

Use of measure

Regarding its effectiveness, since its establishment in 2008, UGV activated more than 1,000 crisis units and managed more than 3,000 meetings between companies, trade unions and local institutions. In 2019, UGV dealt with 149 situations of business crisis involving 180,000 workers. The concerned companies belong to different sectors, with steel, appliances and ICT as the most involved.

The most important example are: Bridgestone, Whirlpool, Arcelor Mittal, Micron, SM Optics, SGL, Saeco (Philips group), Pilkington, Italtel, Alitalia. In 2017, 42 crisis talks were concluded. Among them, 27 (64%) ended up positively, with the development of a restructuring plan and new investments, or the acquisition of the company by a new investor. 9 (21%) ended with a conservative solution, while 6 (14%) with a business closure.

The main weakness of the measure is that crisis management is relatively long: on average, each case takes more than two years (28-30 months), with some cases taking more than 60 months (see for instance Alcoa, Lucchini, Termini Imerese, OM Carrelli, Gepin, Ideal Standard). Of the 149 crisis tables managed in 2019, 102 (that is 68.5%) have been active for more than three years and 28 have been open for more than 7 years. UGV’s actions are mostly targeted to large companies, which represent more than one third of the companies involved in negotiations. 

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Does not apply to workers Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
Trade unions
Employers' organisations
Local / regional government
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Unknown Unknown
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Unknown
  • Main level of involvement: Unknown



Views and reactions




Eurofound (2022), Unit for the management of disputes concerning enterprises facing difficulties , measure IT-2007-14/2736 (measures in Italy), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


Eurofound publications based on EU PolicyWatch

30 January 2023


Measures to lessen the impact of the inflation and energy crisis on citizens

Governments across the EU continue to implement policies to support citizens and businesses in the face of rising food and energy prices caused by the COVID-19 crisis and intensified by the war in Ukraine. This article summarises the policy responses as reported in Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch database from January to September 2022.


12 September 2022


First responses to cushion the impact of inflation on citizens

Although the worldwide pandemic situation had already disrupted supply chains and triggered increases in energy and food prices in 2021, the situation deteriorated in 2022 with the Russian invasion of Ukraine.


12 September 2022


Policies to support EU companies affected by the war in Ukraine

This article summarises the first policy responses that governments across the EU have started to implement to support companies affected by the rising prices, and those with commercial ties to Ukraine, Russia or Belarus.


5 July 2022


Policies to support refugees from Ukraine

This article summarises the first policy responses of EU Member States, including those of the social partners and other civil society actors, enabling refugees to exercise their rights under the Temporary Protection Directive.


Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.