corporative state, economic system inaugurated by the Fascist regime of Benito Mussolini in Italy. It was adapted in modified form under other European dictatorships, among them Adolf Hitler's National Socialist regime in Germany and the Spanish regime of Francisco Franco. Although the Italian system was based upon unlimited government control of economic life, it still preserved the framework of capitalism. Legislation of 1926 and later years set up 22 guilds, or associations, of employees and employers to administer various sectors of the national economy. These were represented in the national council of corporations. The corporations were generally weighted by the state in favor of the wealthy classes, and they served to combat socialism and syndicalism by absorbing the trade union movement. The Italian corporative state aimed in general at reduced consumption in the interest of militarization. See fascism.
See R. Sarti, Fascism and the Industrial Leadership in Italy, 1919–1940 (1971).