UCL Institute of Finance & Technology


Social Outcomes Contract (SOC) for the work inclusion of inmates

7 September 2022

IFT's PhD researcher Filippo Addarii is pioneering a project to break the recidivism cycle in Italy. By increasing work inclusion of convicts, the project should reduce reincarceration rates and associated social costs.

We are delighted to share that our PhD researcher and co-founder of PlusValue, Filippo Addarii, is pioneering an initiative to foster the work inclusion of prisoners in Italy.

Through the implementation of innovative financing, service delivery and procurement methodologies, the Social Outcomes Contract (SOC) aims to provide convicts with employment opportunities in the private sector while they are still in prison, to support their smooth integration back into society. The project uses a set of innovative solutions starting with the financing model (also known as a social impact bond) to increase private investors' participation - and risk sharing - in labour market initiatives with a measurable outcome.

Social Outcomes Project logo

The project will, in the first instance, provide employment opportunities for 200 inmates in Lombardy who are serving a 1 to 2-year residual sentence. Utilising new digital technologies, participants will be profiled and matched to jobs. They will be trained for the job and supported by companies specialised in job placement. Then, by comparing the reoffending rate of participants in the scheme with historic data of former inmates without access to such a scheme, the project will monitor its impact and prove its potential to be adopted across Italy.

This innovative project, designed for Italy, was founded in collaboration with the Italian Ministry of Justice and the Advisory Hub of the European Investment Bank in 2018 as a means to support public administration to improve convicts’ rehabilitation process, and to incentivise investors to supply upfront capital for financial rewards on a 'pay-by-results' basis if agreed social outcomes are achieved. The model was inspired by merging the first social impact bond tested in the UK with Programma 2121, a pilot for work inclusion of prisoners conceived by PlusValue for Lendlease.

Filippo Addarii said: “This is one of our ventures that developed from the work with Lendlease at MIND – Milan Innovation District. Programma 2121 defined the liability of the prison as a next development site into a defining feature. First task accomplished. Now, we are working on the scale up model to open up this opportunity to 5000 people who are still in prison and deserve a chance to change their life for the better.”

European Commissioner for the Economy, Paolo Gentiloni, said: The support and technical assistance provided through the Investment Plan for Europe’s Advisory Hub will enable the Italian Ministry of Justice to facilitate the social inclusion of convicts, at first in Lombardy but later hopefully in other regions too. This will be achieved through new financing solutions like social impact bonds. It will not only help the social and economic reintegration of inmates, but also reduce the costs for the public administration.”