English Combined Authorities and Italian Metropolitan Cities: A Comparative Perspective

by Małgorzata Lorencka, Marta Obrębska,

Empowering local government has been a recurrent element of political programmes of British and Italian governments since the 1990s. The political decisions concerning local government made in the past decade were undoubtedly influenced by the effects of the 2008 economic crisis and the global metropolisation processes with the growing importance of urban development affecting international economy and culture. In the British case, combined authorities are currently functioning in England, based on devolution agreements between the central government and local authorities. In Italy the central authorities, except in autonomous region, have chosen another way: metropolitan cities are established top-down, by way of constitutional and statutory laws. The aim of the article is comparative analysis of the process of development of English combined authorities and Italian metropolitan cities, providing the basis for discussion of the principles of structural change of local government units over the past decade. Legal, administrative, political and economic factors that contributed to the formation of new entities are analyzed. The study shows that both England and Italy face the problem of insufficient democracy in the bodies of combined authorities and metropolitan cities established after the onset of the economic crisis in 2008.

published in Vol 18 – No 2 – 2018 // General issue
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  • Alina Mungiu-Pippidi (chair) Hertie School of Governance
  • Larry Diamond Stanford University
  • Tom Gallagher University of Bradford
  • Alena Ledeneva University College London
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  • Philippe Schmitter Stanford University
  • Helen Wallace London School of Economics and Political Science

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  • Ingi Iusmen

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Societatea Academica Romana