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24 May 2017

Presence of Migrants in Metropolitan cities


Over the past years, Italian authorities have considerably improved their data collection and dissemination system in the area of migration and integration. The Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs is at the forefront of this dynamic, producing periodic reports with key indicators relative to social and labour market inclusion of EU and non-EU citizens. The latest one was published on 24 May 2017. It is a new series of data on 14 major Italian cities which depicts the diversity of the immigrant resident population, as well as their integration processes and outcomes.

Data show that Metropolitan areas in the centre and northern regions are those that host the largest immigrant population, both in absolute and relative terms: nearly 20% of the non-EU migrant population resides in Rome or Milan alone. The latter is also the Italian city with the highest presence of immigrant resident: 12% of the total population.

In contrast, the recent surge in immigrant flows due to the refugee crisis has particularly affected southern cities which have witnessed their largest growth in immigrant population over the past years. This may bring challenges for integration given the poor economic prospects offered by southern cities. It is in medium-size cities that measures of integration fare better: the share of long-term residents, permits for family reasons or size of second generation immigrants is generally higher in cities like Bologna or Venice rather than in Rome or Milan. 

The new publication is complementary to the national Annual Report on the Labour Market Situation of immigrants published Since 2011 and the National Reports on the Main Foreign Communities published since 2013. In 2016, the technical agency of the Ministry of Labour responsible for labour market policies already produced 20 reports (one for each Italian Region) with detailed information including facts and figures on the presence and inclusion of immigrants, as well as insights into specific integration policies developed in each Region.    

Most of the information provided in these reports are largely based on official administrative or survey data produced by the National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT), agencies for social security and occupational health insurance (INPS and INAIL), as well as other public sources such as the Ministry of Interior, local civil registries, the Ministry of Education or local employment centres.


The Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs
Geographic area
Contributor type
National governmental actor
Original source
Posted by
Ester Salis
Country Coordinator

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