Good Work is defined as an activity which is: excellent in quality, referring to the standards applying to the field; engaging for the practitioner, namely personally meaningful; ethically carried out, hence socially valuable (Gardner, Csikszentmihalyi, & Damon, 2001). A field allowing to develop this kind of good work is more likely to attract new apprentices. Applying such categories to politics would allow to outline forms of Good Politics able to build a political system effective in encouraging citizens’ participation. The shift from traditional political participation to civil society initiatives (Zukin, Keeter, Andolina, Jenkins, & Delli Carpini, 2006) suggests that two separate processes are in action. On the one hand the rising political cynicism (PCY), which is the degree of mistrust towards politics (Agger, Goldstein, & Pearl, 1961). On the other hand the constant search of involvement in social activities: when adequately satisfied it is source of flow of consciousness for individuals (Csikszentmihalyi, 1975/2000), fostering their own wellbeing. The aim of this study is to develop a method to monitor the psychological quality of political participation, integrating several psychological aspects. We interviewed thirteen high level experts of Italian politics, gathered among journalists, historians and political scientists. The grid interview was built on the basis of the tools developed for the GoodWork Project (Gardner, Csikszentmihalyi, & Damon, 2001; GoodWork Project Team, 2008), adapted to the Italian context and to the political field. The analyses of the interviews allowed us to create eighteen items describing important features to be held by “good politicians”. Subsequently we administered an online questionnaire to 224 political activists including such items, a scale for PCY (Bobbio & Manganelli, 2010; Pattyn, Van Hiel, & Dhont, 2009) and a scale of flow (Flow State Scale, FSS) (Jackson & Marsh, 1996; Muzio, 2004). The factor analysis performed on the eighteen items highlighted three main components of Good Politics: engagement (passion experienced by the politician himself and passed on to others), success (being able to get votes and to advance his own career) and competence (having a good knowledge in a specific field and in the legislative domain in general). On the basis of such factors we performed the cluster analysis that led us to identify four groups. The ANOVA showed an effect of groups for both PCY (F(3,220) = 3, p < .05) and FSS (F(3,136) = 4.16, p < .01). Hence we described four groups of activists, based on the three factors, on PCY and on FSS: technicians, pragmatists, idealists and cynics. As the first three groups represent different paths to Good Politics, the latter embody a threat to the political system. Promoting political participation is a key issue for modern societies. But it is important to focus on the quality of people involved, not only on the quantity. Monitoring psychological dimensions of political activists would allow to evaluate the health conditions of a political environment, hence appraising the efficacy of its selective processes (Inghilleri, 1999).
|Titolo:||Good politics for a positive participation|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2012|
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore M-PSI/05 - Psicologia Sociale|
|Citazione:||Good politics for a positive participation / M. Boffi, P. Inghilleri. ((Intervento presentato al convegno 6th European Conference on Positive Psychology tenutosi a Moscow nel 2012.|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||14 - Intervento a convegno non pubblicato|