Italy

Europe’s next headache: Italy’s banking crisis

Italy’s distressed banking sector is quickly becoming a source of great concern throughout Europe’s financial markets. Angelo Baglioni breaks down the crisis as an outcome of two factors: bank mismanagement and the insolvency generated by a deep recession, which have caused bad loans to soar to unprecedented levels. He concludes it is reasonable to expect that the EU institutions will allow Italy to support its banking […]

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    The Five Star Movement’s victories in Italy’s mayoral elections: A major blow for Renzi and the PD

The Five Star Movement’s victories in Italy’s mayoral elections: A major blow for Renzi and the PD

Italy’s Five Star Movement secured victory in mayoral elections in Rome and Turin on 19 June. James L. Newell and Arianna Giovannini interpret the results as a major blow for Italy’s Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi. Substantial problems now lie ahead for the Italian government, as the PM faces a looming referendum on constitutional reform on which he has staked […]

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Matteo Renzi’s election prospects: a work in progress

Matteo Renzi has been Italian Prime Minister since 2014, but has faced a number of challenges in retaining his support ahead of the next general election. James L. Newell writes that much will be revealed by the results of local elections in June, where Renzi’s party faces significant challenges, and beyond that by the usual problems of managing the […]

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    The Italian troublemaker: How Renzi’s European strategy is putting him at odds with Angela Merkel

The Italian troublemaker: How Renzi’s European strategy is putting him at odds with Angela Merkel

Italy’s prime minister, Matteo Renzi, has voiced criticism of EU decision-making in recent months in relation to both the migration crisis and fiscal policy rules. Lorenzo Piccoli writes that although Renzi’s European policy is partly rooted in seeing off the challenge of Eurosceptic parties within Italy, he is also intent on playing a more assertive role at the European […]

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    Book Review: Transnational Neofascism in France and Italy by Andrea Mammone

Book Review: Transnational Neofascism in France and Italy by Andrea Mammone

In Transnational Neofascism in France and Italy, Andrea Mammone details the establishment and evolution of transnational networks of the extreme right in France and Italy from 1945 to the present day. The book addresses a number of key topics, including decolonisation and the events of 1968, whilst also emphasising the importance of the exchange of ideas, personnel and strategies across […]

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    Italy’s off shore oil referendum: Another lost opportunity

Italy’s off shore oil referendum: Another lost opportunity

On 17 April, a referendum was held in Italy on rules governing off shore drilling licenses. As Biagio Carrano and Irene Monasterolo write, this relatively niche issue nevertheless produced a full-blown political contest, involving heavy infighting inside the government coalition. They argue that these events illustrate the Italian government is still more concerned with protecting the interests of powerful […]

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You can’t get it all: Italy’s public finances

The Italian government will present its public finance projections by 10 April. Lorenzo Codogno writes that fiscal policy is expected to be strongly expansionary in 2016, but courtesy of flexibility clauses, the government will likely avoid entering into the EU’s so called ‘Excessive Deficit Procedure’ in May. He argues however that a fiscal problem looms large in 2017, while […]

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    Italy’s double standards: The Regeni and Abu Omar cases reveal a contradictory approach to human rights

Italy’s double standards: The Regeni and Abu Omar cases reveal a contradictory approach to human rights

The torture and murder of Italian PhD student Giulio Regeni in Egypt has reignited deep concerns about the treatment of human rights in the Middle East. Andrea Lorenzo Capussela contrasts the tragic event with another case just considered by the European Court of Human Rights: the abduction in 2003 of the Egyptian Muslim cleric Abu Omar by the CIA […]

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    The great excuse: How Renzi could exploit the UK’s EU deal

The great excuse: How Renzi could exploit the UK’s EU deal

The conclusion of the UK’s renegotiation has obvious implications for British party politics, but what impact has the deal had on domestic politics in other EU countries? Bruno Marino and Nicola Martocchia Diodati write on reactions to the deal in Italy. They state that while the response has been mixed among Italian parties, Matteo Renzi is likely to view […]

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In memory of Giulio Regeni – In memoria di Giulio Regeni

The tragic disappearance and murder of Cambridge PhD student Giulio Regeni in Cairo has come as a profound shock for his home country, Italy, and for the academic community in the United Kingdom and beyond. Fellow countryman and doctoral researcher Angelo Martelli offers his personal reflections. We publish this text in English and in Italian translation.

At 17 you win a […]

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    Whatever its outcome, the Brexit referendum is likely to strengthen anti-EU rhetoric in Italy

Whatever its outcome, the Brexit referendum is likely to strengthen anti-EU rhetoric in Italy

What impact is the UK’s EU referendum likely to have on Italian politics? Bruno Marino and Nicola Martocchia Diodati see few chances for the referendum to reinforce the position of pro-EU parties in Italy, irrespective of its outcome. With Euroscepticism on the rise in Italy, even a win for the Remain campaign could bolster stances critical of further European […]

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    Raising limits on cash payments sends the wrong signal in Italy’s fight against corruption

Raising limits on cash payments sends the wrong signal in Italy’s fight against corruption

Many states have a limit on the size of payments that can legally be made in cash, with anything above this limit needing to be transferred via traceable methods of payment such as bank transfers or credit cards. As Andrea Lorenzo Capussela writes, Italy’s PM Matteo Renzi recently proposed an increase in the country’s €1,000 threshold for cash payments up to a €3,000 limit. He […]

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    Junior partner no more: How the growth of the Lega Nord could reshape the right in Italy

Junior partner no more: How the growth of the Lega Nord could reshape the right in Italy

In recent decades, the right of Italy’s party system has been dominated by Silvio Berlusconi, who currently heads a revived version of his Forza Italia party. As Daniele Albertazzi writes, however, Forza Italia has been pushed into fourth place in several opinion polls in 2015 by the growth of the Northern League (Lega Nord), which has traditionally advocated a […]

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    Italy is stretching budget flexibility to the limit, raising a number of issues over EU fiscal rules

Italy is stretching budget flexibility to the limit, raising a number of issues over EU fiscal rules

Italy is currently asking Brussels for more flexibility over its new budget for structural reforms, investments and to help manage the refugee crisis. Lorenzo Codogno writes that this makes the Italian budget expansionary and, perhaps, also pro-cyclical. Moreover, it raises a number of issues on the proper interpretation of EU fiscal rules, the rules themselves, and the most appropriate […]

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    European views on the UK’s renegotiation: Italy, Poland, Bulgaria and Malta

European views on the UK’s renegotiation: Italy, Poland, Bulgaria and Malta

The success or failure of David Cameron’s planned renegotiation of the UK’s EU membership will depend to a large extent on how the other 27 EU member states respond to his proposals. But how do countries across the EU view the UK’s renegotiation? Building on a report published in 2014 by the German Council on Foreign Relations, EUROPP is […]

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    Recent trends in Italy highlight the ‘presidentialised’ future of democratic politics in Europe

Recent trends in Italy highlight the ‘presidentialised’ future of democratic politics in Europe

Are European political systems becoming more ‘presidentialised’? Fortunato Musella writes on the experience of Italy in recent decades, first under the leadership of Silvio Berlusconi, and later under Matteo Renzi. He argues that the movement toward presidentialisation in the country is not unique to Italy and is part of a wider trend across western Europe.

Some cross-national trends are changing […]

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    Italy’s latest legislation on accounting fraud highlights the country’s difficulty in pursuing real economic and political reform

Italy’s latest legislation on accounting fraud highlights the country’s difficulty in pursuing real economic and political reform

Italy has a longstanding corruption problem which the Italian Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi, has pledged to address. Andrea Lorenzo Capussela and Vito Intini write on a recent piece of legislation introduced in June which alters the rules on accounting fraud. They argue that the legislation has opened up a significant loophole and is indicative of the Italian political system’s […]

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    External pressure is needed to help Italy tackle its persistent corruption problem

External pressure is needed to help Italy tackle its persistent corruption problem

Corruption has been a persistent problem in Italy, with the country receiving one of the lowest scores of EU member states in Transparency International’s latest ‘Corruption Perceptions Index’. Andrea Lorenzo Capussela and Vito Intini provide a comprehensive look at the problem, noting that on several measures corruption has increased since the late 1990s. They argue that corruption in Italy […]

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    There is little evidence that the proposed reform of Italy’s labour market will actually generate growth or employment

There is little evidence that the proposed reform of Italy’s labour market will actually generate growth or employment

The Italian government has outlined a number of policies aimed at reforming Italy’s labour market, with the proposals receiving final approval in the Italian Senate on 3 December. Andrea Lorenzo Capussela and Vito Intini assess whether the reforms, which have proved controversial, will actually have the desired effect in generating economic growth and employment. They write that while increasing […]

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    The ‘domino effect’ from Scotland’s referendum is increasing demands for independence in Italian regions

The ‘domino effect’ from Scotland’s referendum is increasing demands for independence in Italian regions

While the independence movements in Scotland and Catalonia have received substantial attention, other countries across Europe are also facing demands from regions for greater autonomy or secession. Eve Hepburn writes on three such movements in Italy: in South Tyrol, Veneto and Sardinia. She argues that the result of the Scottish referendum is likely to shape the immediate future of […]

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