Citizens’ committees have become an increasingly frequent, relevant phenomenon in Italian local politics and policy over the last decade or so. This article examines protest campaigns concerning traffic policies in four medium-size cities in which such committees have played a pivotal role. Though the ability of such actors to successfully impose their preferences on the policy agenda appears to be at the very least uncertain, an analysis of these campaigns reveals some of the factors that can increase their chances of exerting influence on policy decisions. Such factors include the resources these campaigns can mobilize – namely various forms of human, social and political capital –, how politically opportune they are, and their ability to structure public discourse within a global framework that fosters the building of coalitions supporting their claims.
Piazza, G., Mosca, L., Lewanski, R., Andretta, M. (2005). Protest and Arguments: The Citizen's Committees' Campaigns Against Traffic in Four Italian Cities. WORLD POLITICAL SCIENCE REVIEW, 1(2), 99-125.