Technocrats in (the crises of) the state. Political change and state transformations in Italy


Abstract


Technocracy is one of the main issues in contemporary social sciences scholarship. While many authors have written on, among others themes, the rise of technocracy, the concept and definition of technocracy, or the typologies of technocratic governments, the specific question of the relation between technocracy (and technocrats) and state transformations has been less explored. Through the study of the Italian case, we analyze the role of technocrats in three critical junctures (since the early 1980s to the present), and in light of the intertwined process of state transformation and neoliberalization. The paper thus provides for a long-term analysis of technocracy and the state, asking when, how, and in what conditions technocrats not only came to hold top-government positions, but also concurred to redefine intra-state institutional relations especially as regards the strengthening of executive power.


DOI Code: 10.1285/i20398573v7n1p5

Keywords: Technocracy; state reconfiguration; Italy; expertise; neoliberalism; executive power

References


Amyot, G 2004, Business, the State and Economic Policy: The Case of Italy, Routledge London.

Antonelli, F 2019, Tecnocrazia e democrazia. L’egemonia al tempo della società digitale, L’Asino d’oro, Roma.

Barrow, C W 1993, Critical Theories of the State: Marxist, Neomarxist, Postmarxist, Uni-versity of Wisconsin Press, Madison.

Bickerton, CJ & Accetti, C 2021, Technopopulism: The new logic of democratic politics, Ox-ford University Press, New York.

Cahill, D 2014, The End of Laissez-Faire? On the Durability of Embedded Neoliberalism, Edward Elgar, Cheatham.

Calvano, R 2014, ‘La Decretazione d’Urgenza Nella Stagione delle Larghe Intese’. Associazione Italiana dei Costituzionalisti, 2, pp. 1–23.

Caselli, D 2020, Esperti. Come studiarli e perché, Il Mulino, Bologna.

Calise, M 2005, ‘Presidentialization, Italian Style’, in T Poguntke & P D Webb (eds), The Presidentialization of Politics: A Comparative Study of Modern Democra-cies, Oxford University Press, Oxford, pp. 88–106.

Centeno, MA 1993, ‘The New Leviathan: The Dynamics and Limits of Technocra-cy’, Theory and Society, vol. 22, n. 3, pp. 307–335.Clarke, S 1990, ‘Crisis of So-cialism or Crisis of the State?’, Capital and Class, vol. 42, pp. 19–29. https://doi.org/10.1177/030981689004200102.

Cozzolino, A 2019, ‘Reconfiguring the State: Executive Powers, Emergency Legis-lation, and Neoliberalization in Italy’, Globalizations, vol. 16, n. 3, pp. 336–352. https://doi.org/10.1080/14747731.2018.1502495

Cozzolino, A 2020, ‘The discursive construction of Europe in Italy in the age of permanent austerity’, JCMS: Journal of Common Market Studies, vol. 58, no. 3, pp. 580–598. https://doi.org/10.1111/jcms.12921.

Cozzolino, A 2021, Neoliberal Transformations of the Italian State. Understanding the Roots of the Crises, Rowman&Littlefield, London.

Cozzolino, A & Giannone, D 2019, ‘State Transformations and Neoliberalization in Italy: A Critical Discourse Analysis of Governments’ Political Economy, 1988–2009’, New Political Science, vol. 41, n. 3, pp. 443–458. https://doi.org/10.1080/07393148.2019.1642724.

Criscitiello, A 2021, ‘Il potere normativo del Presidente del Consiglio in Italia’, in F Musella (ed), L’emergenza democratica. Presidenti, decreti, crisi pandemica, pp. 47–88, Editoriale Scientifica, Napoli.

Crozier, M, Huntington, SP, & Watanuki, J 1975, The crisis of democracy, New York University Press, New York.

Davies, W 2016, The limits of neoliberalism: Authority, sovereignty and the logic of competi-tion. Sage, London.

Desrosières, A 2015, ‘Retroaction: How indicators feed back onto quantified ac-tors’, in R Rottenburg, S E Merry, S-J Park & J Mugler (eds), The world of in-dicators. The making of governmental knowledge through quantification, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp. 329–53.

Dyson, K & Featherstone, K 1996, ‘Italy and EMU as a ‘Vincolo Esterno’: Em-powering the Technocrats, Transforming the State’. South European Society and Politics, vol. 1, no. 2, pp. 272–299. https://doi.org/10.1080/13608749608539475.

Fabbrini, S & Donà, A 2003, ‘Europeanisation as Strengthening of Domestic Ex-ecutive Power? The Italian Experience and the Case of the ‘Legge Comuni-taria’, Journal of European Integration, vol. 25, no. 1, pp. 31–50. https://doi.org/10.1080/070363303100007208.

Fazi, T 2021, ‘The eternal return of the technical government in Italy’, American Af-fairs, Vol. 5, n. 2 (summer), Available at: https://americanaffairsjournal.org/2021/05/the-eternal-return-of-technical-government-in-italy/.

Ferrarotti, F 1965, ‘Introduzione’, in J Meynaud (ed), Tecnocrazia e politica, Cappelli, Rocca San Casciano, pp. 5–13.

Ferrera, M & Gualmini, E 2004, Rescued by Europe? Social and Labour Market Reforms in Italy from Maastricht to Berlusconi, Amsterdam University Press, Amsterdam.

Fischer, F 1990, Technocracy and the Politics of Expertise, Sage, Newbury Park (CA) and London.

Fischer, F 2009, Democracy and expertise: Reorienting policy inquiry, Oxford University Press, Oxford.

Giannone, D 2015, ‘Suspending Democracy? The Governance of the EU’s Political and Economic Crisis as a Process of Neoliberal Restructuring’, in K N Demetriou (ed), The European Union in Crisis: Explorations in Representation and Democratic Legitimacy, Springer, Cham, pp. 101–119.

Giannone, D 2019, In perfetto Stato. Indicatori globali e politiche di valutazione dello Stato neoliberale, Mimesis, Milano.

Giannone, D & Cozzolino, A 2021, ‘La costruzione dell’Europa nella narrazione del Presidente della Repubblica. Uno studio esplorativo sui discorsi di fine an-no (1949–2019)’, Quaderni di scienza politica, vol. 28, no. 1, pp. 35–61. https://doi.org/10.48271/100456.

Graziani, A 1998, Lo sviluppo dell’economia italiana: dalla ricostruzione alla moneta unica, Bollati Boringhieri, Torino.

Gualmini, E & Schmidt, V A 2013, ‘State transformation in Italy and France: Technocratic versus political leadership on the road from non-liberalism to neo-liberalism’, in V A Schmidt & M Thatcher (eds), Resilient liberalism in Europe’s political economy, edited by, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp. 346–373

Hibbing, JR & Theiss-Morse, E 2002, Stealth democracy: Americans’ beliefs about how gov-ernment should work, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Keeler, JTS 1993, ‘Opening the window for reform: Mandates, crises, and extraor-dinary policy-making’, Comparative Political Studies, vol. 25, no. 4, pp. 433–486. https://doi.org/10.1177/0010414093025004002.

Lastrico, V 2015, Tecnocrazia come egemonia valoriale depoliticizzata. Quali frameworks teo-rici nei conflitti e nelle pratiche sociali contemporanee?, Working Paper del Centro Einaudi, n. 6.

Masini, F 2019, ‘Tracing neoliberalism in Italy: intellectual and political connec-tions’, The European Journal of the History of Economic Thought, vol. 26 no. 2, pp. 327–351. https://doi.org/10.1080/09672567.2019.1575444.

McDonnell, D & Valbruzzi, M 2014, ‘Defining and classifying technocrat-led and technocratic governments’, European Journal of Political Research, vol. 53, no. 4, pp. 654–671. https://doi.org/10.1111/1475-6765.12054.

Meynaud, J 1965. Tecnocrazia e politica. Cappelli, Rocca San Casciano [Or. Ed. Tech-nocratie et Politique (1960)], Lausanne.

Mitchell, T 1991, ‘The Limits of the State: Beyond Statist Approaches and Their Critics’, American Political Science Review, vol. 85, no. 1, pp. 77–96. https://doi.org/10.2307/1962879.

Moschella, M 2017, ‘Italy and the Fiscal Compact: Why Does a Country Commit to Permanent Austerity?’, Italian Political Science Review/Rivista Italiana di Scienza Politica, vol. 47, no. 2, pp. 205–225. https://doi.org/10.1017/ipo.2017.7.

Musella, F 2019, ‘Introduzione: Il Governo in Italia tra Partiti e Presidenti’, in Mu-sella F (ed), Il Governo in Italia: Profili Costituzionali e Dinamiche Politiche, Il Mu-lino, Bologna, pp. 11–26.

Musella, F (ed) 2021, L’emergenza democratica. Presidenti, decreti, crisi pandemica, Edito-riale Scientifica, Napoli.

Norris, P & Inglehart, R 2019, Cultural backlash: Trump, Brexit, and authoritarian popu-lism. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Pastorella, G 2016, ‘Technocratic Governments in Europe: Getting the Critique Right’, Political Studies, vol. 64, no. 4, pp. 948–965. https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-9248.12217.

Poulantzas, N 1978, State, Power, Socialism, translated by Patrick Camiller, Verso, London.

Quaglia, L 2005, ‘Civil Servants, Economic Ideas, and Economic Policies: Lessons from Italy’, Governance, vol. 18, no. 4, pp. 545–566. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-0491.2005.00291.x.

Radaelli, C 1999, Technocracy in the European Union, Taylor and Francis, London.

Rottenburg, R, Merry, SE, Park, SJ & Mugler, J (eds) 2015, The world of indicators: the making of governmental knowledge through quantification, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Sacchi, S 2015, ‘Conditionality by Other Means: EU Involvement in Italy’s Struc-tural Reforms in the Sovereign Debt Crisis’, Comparative European Politics, vol. 13, no. 1, pp. 77–92. https://doi.org/10.1057/cep.2014.42.

Sarfatti Larson, M 1972–73, ‘Notes on Technocracy: Some Problems of Theory, Ideology and Power’, Berkeley Journal of Sociology, vol. 17, pp. 1–34

Scicluna, N, & Auer, S 2019, ‘From the Rule of Law to the Rule of Rules: Technoc-racy and the Crisis of EU Governance’, West European Politics, vol. 42, no. 7, pp. 1420–1442. https://doi.org/10.1080/01402382.2019.1584843.

Supiot, A 2011, Lo spirito di Filadelfia. Giustizia sociale e mercato totale, Et Al, Roma.

Wallace, W & Smith, J 1995, ‘Democracy or technocracy? European integration and the problem of popular consent’, West European Politics, vol. 18, no. 3, pp. 137–157. https://doi.org/10.1080/01402389508425095.

Wratil, C & Pastorella, G 2018, ‘Dodging the bullet: How crises trigger technocrat‐led governments’, European Journal of Political Research, vol. 57, no. 2, pp. 450–472. https://doi.org/10.1111/1475-6765.12234.


Full Text: pdf

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.