Riding paradox: Lessons learned from Italian participatory policy-making experiences

  • Terri Mannarini University of Salento
Keywords: , participatory policy making, conflict, power, exclusion, community participation


In this paper, some of the psychosocial aspects of participatory policy making in Italy are analyzed, with specific attention given to the relationship between internal agents (IAs) and external agents (EAs). Based both on a review of the documented Italian case studies in a variety of policy areas and on direct experience, three major issues are addressed: conflict, power and exclusion. It is argued that the majority of the problems that pertain to the relationship between IAs and EAs can be attributed to two comprehensive underlying dimensions that characterize all participatory policy-making processes, namely, the paradoxical nature of institutionalized participation and the tensive nature of social relationships. Implications for community work are discussed.

Author Biography

Terri Mannarini, University of Salento

Department of History

Society and Human Studies

University of Salento

via Stampacchia 45

73100 Lecce, Italy

How to Cite
Mannarini, T. (2014). Riding paradox: Lessons learned from Italian participatory policy-making experiences. Revista Interamericana De Psicologia/Interamerican Journal of Psychology, 48(1). https://doi.org/10.30849/rip/ijp.v48i1.247