One of the main ‘promises’ that populist parties seek to deliver is to bring politics closer to the ‘people’. While the literature focused mainly on the relationship between voters and those parties, less attention has been given to the role of members’ priorities in shaping parties’ legislative activity. In this paper, we focus on a paradigmatic technopopulist case, the Italian Five Star Movement (FSM): one of the founding trademarks of the party was the involvement of the members in the party activities via a digital platform. FSM’s digital platform included participative digital law-making features, which matched member priorities and élite policymaking. We built an original dataset which comprises the law-making activities of members and parliamentarians from 2013 to 2019. We analysed 2000 law proposals and found that FSM elected representatives’ agenda, albeit partly diverging from that of members, still changed in the direction of member priorities through time.

A digital principal? Substantive representation in the case of the Italian Five Star Movement / L. Mosca, D. Vittori. - In: EUROPEAN SOCIETIES. - ISSN 1469-8307. - (2022), pp. 1-30. [Epub ahead of print] [10.1080/14616696.2022.2144638]

A digital principal? Substantive representation in the case of the Italian Five Star Movement

L. Mosca;
2022

Abstract

One of the main ‘promises’ that populist parties seek to deliver is to bring politics closer to the ‘people’. While the literature focused mainly on the relationship between voters and those parties, less attention has been given to the role of members’ priorities in shaping parties’ legislative activity. In this paper, we focus on a paradigmatic technopopulist case, the Italian Five Star Movement (FSM): one of the founding trademarks of the party was the involvement of the members in the party activities via a digital platform. FSM’s digital platform included participative digital law-making features, which matched member priorities and élite policymaking. We built an original dataset which comprises the law-making activities of members and parliamentarians from 2013 to 2019. We analysed 2000 law proposals and found that FSM elected representatives’ agenda, albeit partly diverging from that of members, still changed in the direction of member priorities through time.
Populism; substantial representation; Five Stars Movement; digital platforms; party members.
Settore SPS/08 - Sociologia dei Processi Culturali e Comunicativi
Settore SPS/11 - Sociologia dei Fenomeni Politici
Settore SPS/04 - Scienza Politica
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/939610
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