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Brussels syndrome

How elite consensus preserves the Euro in Italy

Add to calendar 2023-03-13 17:00 2023-03-13 18:30 Europe/Rome Brussels syndrome Sala Triaria Villa Schifanoia YYYY-MM-DD


13 March 2023

17:00 - 18:30 CET


Sala Triaria

Villa Schifanoia

The Political economy working group welcomes Arianna Tassinari for a presentation on her recent research co-authored with Lucio Baccaro

Post-functionalist (PF) scholars have had the merit of bringing to the fore the disintegrationist tendencies within the EU, and they have done so well before the emergence of Brexit, the most spectacular case of disintegration so far. The key argument of PF is that the EU has moved from a phase of 'permissive consensus', in which European integration is a matter for elite agreement, to one of "constraining dissensus" in which every new step towards further integration meets with resistance from public opinion and populist parties. Yet, the Italian case represents a puzzle for post-functionalist theory.

Indeed, despite widespread Euroskepticism in public opinion and a willingness to discount the costs of exit as well as Euroskeptic discourse from several political parties, there has been no serious political challenges to Italy’s EU and Euro membership. Antisystem parties quickly adapt their actions and rhetoric once in government.

In this seminar, Arianna Tassinari will explore the reasons behind the non-emergence of a serious disintegration threat in Italy. Based on her previous research, she will argue that the answer lies in Italian elites’ deep-seated and widespread consensus around the beneficial effects of EU and Euro membership for Italy’s economy.


Arianna Tassinari (University of Bologna)

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