Good territorial policy planning needs preliminary considerations about local needs. The present case study intends to reflect on the importance of policy reference context, starting from the identification of initial trainees’ needs in a vocational training centre in Piedmont. This research experience designs a detection system (social antenna) aiming at identifying systemic needs of students and their families, in order to provide appropriate policy making tools. The multi-dimensionality of trainees’ social disadvantage is addressed by structural equation modeling. The present social antenna is specifically designed to detect the changing needs of young trainees, but the systematization of this methodological approach can guarantee the use of social antennas in different areas and contexts. The fil rouge is the ability to provide policy indications on-the-fly, so that the policy makers can instantaneously (re)orient interventions, depending on environmental changes.
Keywords: Policy Programming; Structural Equation Modeling.