This essay compares the new Italian law on unfair dismissal (law no. 92 of 2012) with German law in this field, and also makes reference to the regimes for dismissal in other civil and common law jurisdictions. The author’s study demonstrates that the Italian regime, unlike the German one, is framed on a penalty basis: an employer who initiates a dismissal process for non-performance is still required to follow a legal procedure which is
much more complex than the German model, and the option of reinstating the worker in his post or paying him compensation does not depend on an existing possibility of the parties collaborating, but rather on the type of defect which rendered the dismissal unfair. The Italian regime does not appear to have taken fully into account the need to ensure that the organization of work functions efficiently.
Keywords: Law and development; Comparative labour law; Unfair dismissal; German law on dismissal; Reinstatement in the workplace.