Italian Political Science <p><strong>Italian Political Science (IPS)</strong>&nbsp;is an open-access peer-reviewed quarterly journal dedicated to deepening the understanding of political phenomena relevant for political scientists and a wider public, including journalists, policy-makers, policy analysts, political activists and all those who have an interest in politics.</p> <p>IPS publishes&nbsp;<strong>intellectually stimulating and conceptually rigorous contributions</strong>&nbsp;on all areas relevant to Political science. All articles include a focus on contemporary Italy, either considered as a case-study or in comparative or European perspective.</p> Società Italiana di Scienza Politica - Italian Association of Political Science en-US Italian Political Science 2420-8434 Women’s substantive representation in the Covid-19 reconstruction. The case of the Italian National Recovery and Resilience Plan <p>During the Covid-19 emergency, recent progress in the race for gender equality slowed down as a consequence of mitigation measures such as lockdowns and school closures. In such a context, women have been largely under-represented in decision-making concerning the health crisis and the recovery effort. This dynamic complements growing pressure from women interest groups against the scarce attention to gendered concerns in the fight against the pandemic. As a result, the outbreak and its response raise the question of the importance of women’s representation for the saliency of policies directly supporting their empowerment. The parliamentary debate on the Italian National Recovery and Resilience Plan (NRRP) offers a well-defined case for assessing the relevance of substantive representation in Italy within the Covid-19 recovery. Position papers and proposals from women interest groups vocally campaigning for parity offer the benchmark against which we code over 200 parliamentary speeches for their gendered content. The analysis compares the different prevalence of gendered concerns across female and male Members of the Parliament – accounting for ideological differences. We argue that representation matters for gender empowerment policies, as female policymakers within the parliament, in partnership with women interest groups outside the forum, are those primarily raising such concerns in the making of the Italian NRRP. The paper contributes to the extant literature on women representation by evidencing a stark gender gap in the policies included in the final version of the plan, ultimately leading to a missed opportunity for a more equal society.</p> Matilde Ceron Antonella Zarra Copyright (c) 2022 Matilde Ceron, Antonella Zarra 2022-03-09 2022-03-09 16 2 Migrants, religion, and politics: an imperfect combination. The strange case of the Italians in times of migration <p>How do Italians perceive immigrants? Over the last twenty years, the issue of immigration has become increasingly relevant. With the intensification of landings, the issue connected to immigration has become an element of conflict and confrontation both in civil society and in politics. Among the various determinants that explain the attitude towards immigration, religion appears to play a very important role in orienting public opinion. Using some information collected by the European Values ​​survey in the last five years (2016-2018) it emerges that after the 2015 migration peak, Catholics tend to be less positive about immigrants and perceive them as a problem for their culture in general. Over time, the action of the Catholic Church and the effects it has produced on those who participate in religious life have attenuated this negative attitude.</p> Vincenzo Memoli Maria Pina Di Pastena Copyright (c) 2022 Vincenzo Memoli, Maria Pina Di Pastena 2022-03-09 2022-03-09 16 2 Beyond welfare chauvinism? Populist radical right parties’ social policies and the exclusion of migrants from national welfare in Italy <p>The present article contributes to the advancement of the understanding of the social policies of populist radical right parties (PRRPs) by focusing on the case of Italy during the Conte I government (June 2018-September 2019). By taking the Italian PRRP, the League, as an example, it investigates the <em>ideological</em> and <em>rhetorical</em> frames exploited by PRRPs to promote and legitimize cuts in welfare generosity toward migrants when they hold governmental positions. The specific welfare benefit under observation is the 2019 means-tested Citizenship Income (<em>Reddito di Cittadinanza</em>, RdC). The article relies on the theoretical framework by Abs (2021), showing that PRRPs exploit two different frames to promote restrictive social measures against migrants during national elections and in their manifestos, i.e., the welfare chauvinism (WC) and the welfare producerism (WP) frames. The article assesses whether, and to what extent, PRRPs transpose these frames into their governmental action. Furthermore, it also examines which of these frames ruling PRRPs are most likely to exploit. The findings show that, when in a ruling position, the League supports exclusive solidarity (i.e., the exclusion of TCNs from access to RdC) by exploiting the very same ideological and rhetorical frames exploited during the electoral campaign, i.e., both the WC and WP. It does not try to frame welfare cutbacks in more morally and politically acceptable terms in light of Western European democratic standards. This article confirms that PRRPs tend to de-emphasize social issues in their discourses and hold a clear-cut position only with regard to migrants’ entitlement to the benefit, adopting a clear nativist approach. Moreover, the analysis points out that the overused concept of <em>welfare chauvinism</em> is <em>not</em> fully adequate to illustrate the PRRPs’ social policy formula.</p> Irene Landini Copyright (c) 2022 Irene Landini 2022-03-21 2022-03-21 16 2 “In conspiracies we trust”: interpersonal/institutional trust and beliefs in conspiracy theories during the COVID-19 pandemic <p>Academic research has shown that believing in conspiracy theories is common in contemporary democ-racies and that believing in such theories is particularly common in moments of crisis (such as wars, terrorist attacks, or pandemics). Scholars have attempted to understand the psychological and attitu-dinal elements that trigger conspiracism among the citizenry, finding that both interpersonal and insti-tutional trust negatively correlate with conspiracism. If, however, it is straightforward to expect that people who present low levels of institutional trust might present high levels of conspiracism (due to the consistency of the narratives that drive the two attitudes), no research has so far investigated the mechanism behind the relationship between interpersonal trust and beliefs in conspiracy theories. Using survey data collected in Italy at the beginning of June 2020, after the first pandemic wave in the country, the present contribution aims to identify a plausible socio-psychological mechanism that trig-gers this latter association. Using fixed-effect regression models, we show negative associations be-tween institutional/interpersonal trust and conspiracism – with the former coefficient being bigger than the latter. We also show that pandemic stress, measured as one’s perceived likelihood of being infected by the new Coronavirus, moderates both associations. In particular, at higher levels of pan-demic stress, the correlation between interpersonal trust and conspiracy is larger, while the opposite is true for the relationship with institutional trust. This is consistent with theories that see conspiracism as a simple explanation of a complex world, namely, a tool that people (especially low-interpersonal-trust individuals) employ to reduce stress and anxiety produced by an uncertain situation.</p> Moreno Mancosu Antonella Seddone Giuliano Bobba Federico Vegetti Copyright (c) 2022 Moreno Mancosu, Antonella Seddone, Giuliano Bobba, Federico Vegetti 2022-02-20 2022-02-20 16 2 1 15