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Title: Regional and Local government in Italy: an overview
Authors: Vesperini, Giulio
Keywords: regional government;local government
Issue Date: 25-Jan-2009
The constitutional and legislative reforms of the last decade have created some important tensions in the regional and local systems. One first tension derives from the multiple relationships between the different components of the national government. At the same time, the autonomy of the regions and local governments has been growing; the tools available to the central government for guiding the periphery are being transformed; the spaces for the cooperation between the regions, local governments and the State are being expanded; an unprecedented number of conflicts between the regions and the State are coming before the Constitutional Court; the much-hyped decentralization has been realized only in part.
Another tension has been created by the resistance of central and local governments to the implementation of the reforms: for the central government institutions, this is demonstrated by the failure of decentralization policies; for the peripheral institutions. These resistances hinder innovation, but do not block it altogether: among other things, local governments have found alternative and more flexible forms of aggregation; the decentralization that has been implemented, though much less than that announced, has still significantly altered the functional identity of the regions and local governments in just a few years; the political and administrative organization has experienced important changes.
There is, finally, a tension between the essential features of the constitutional reform and the concrete developments in the local and regional systems. The constitutional model is based on a two-fold principle of separation: the separation of areas of legislative competences by subject-matter and the separation of the types of administrative functions.
Rights: If not otherwise stated, this document is distributed by the Tuscia University Open Archive under a Creative Commons 2.0 Attribution - Noncommercial - Noderivs License (
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