The Calabria Region has a delay of 20 years on the implementation of the integrated system of social interventions and services designed by the law No 328 of 2000 and adopted by regional legislation in 2003. After describing what happened at the regional decision-making level from 2000 to the present days, this article highlights six dimensions of deficit in the structure and functioning of local welfare systems, concerning: infrastructure and organization of departments, levels of integration, social planning, budgeting, number and type of services, and visions. Finally, it highlights how, despite the missing welfare reform, a few social districts have been able to develop innovation in welfare policy and practice, thanks to a combination of resources cleverly intercepted and used by local leadership and social services management, both from public and third sector organizations.
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