The volume collects most of the papers presented at the 86th EAAE Seminar entitled "Farm Income Stabilization: what role should public policies play?", held in Anacapri, Italy, on October 2 1-22, 2004, jointly organized and hosted by the Dipartimento di Economia e Politica Agraria of the University of Naples Federico II and the Centro per la Formazione in Economia e Politica dello Sviluppo Rurale. The title of the seminar was intended to draw attention on the possibility of defining a new, broader role for public policies aimed at agricultural income stabilization. The intention was to try and challenge both the widely held opinion according to which insurance is the best, if not the only suitable instrument for effective risk management in agriculture, and the derived corollary that, given the historic difficulties for private insurance markets to establish in agriculture, an active public intervention in the form of subsidies to insurance premiums is necessary. The most important message sent by the book is that the discussion on the role of public policies intended at assisting farmers' income stabilization should include the wide range of possible private tools that farmers can use (on-farm strategies, insurance, financial and credit markets) and explore ways in which such use can be fostered. Until now, attention has been too narrowly focused on the role of insurance and on the merits of public subsidization. Hopefully the works included in this collection might help highlighting some important aspects of the problem and contribute to a better informed policy making.