Quasi-experimental evaluations in social policies are very rare in Italy, due to several difficulties in the methodological approach and in data collecting that requires an accurate evaluation design. The paper aims to develop a counterfactual evaluation of the effects of the YOUSSAM project, implemented by Roma Capitale in 2011-2012. The intervention provides the deployment of a mobile unit delivering social and health services for homeless around the railway stations of Rome. Project effectiveness was evaluated by measurement of the effect on the social and sanitary wellbeing of contacted homeless. Data was collected by a specific survey using a structured questionnaire. The econometric procedure was based on the DID and DID Matching estimators. The analysis revealed the positive, but not statistically significant, effect of the project in mitigating the worsening health conditions of beneficiaries. The study provides elements for reflection upon applicability of the counterfactual method in evaluating emergency welfare actions.
Keywords: Homeless, Counterfactual Evaluation Method, Social and Sanitary Wellbeing, Emergency Welfare, Evaluation of Social Policies
Guido Pellegrini, Barbara D'Amen, Fabio Massimo Lanzoni, Laura Cucinotta, Angelina Di Prinzio, The evaluation of an emergency welfare action using the counterfactual method: the Youssam project in "RIV Rassegna Italiana di Valutazione" 59/2014, pp. 124-147, DOI:10.3280/RIV2014-059007