This dissertation investigates how, since the burst of the 2008 crisis, self-managed social centers adopting Direct Social Actions (DSAs) have shaped political influence at the municipal level. A rich bulk of social sciences scholarship has addressed the political and social dimensions of the crisis, discussing, on the one hand, the transformation of the repertoires of collective engagement, and, on the other hand, the outcomes of specific collective mobilizations, such as anti-austerity protests. However, a systematic reflection on how the use of different forms of action relates to movement consequences, and particularly to political outcomes, is overall missing from the literature. This is especially the case for those modes of collective action, such as DSAs, that are contentious in nature, but cannot be ascribed to the categories of demonstrative and of conventional action. Adopting a relational research approach, the dissertation employs the causal explanation method of process-tracing, to retrace the sequences of interlocking dynamics through which the pathways of political influence of social centers have unfolded during the decade. In doing so, it offers a framework for analyzing the political influence of collective actors, encompassing three dimensions of change: institutional attitudes, procedural access, and policy. The empirical analysis focuses on two Italian city cases, Bologna and Naples, and is based, on the one hand, on semi-structured in-depth interviews conducted with social centers’ activists, local elected officials, and key informants. On the other hand, gathered sources include a set of local press articles (2005-2019), materials produced by collective actors themselves, press releases, and municipal institutional documents (including policy and administrative acts, transcripts, and reports). The interviews and document analysis have been integrated with fieldnotes from local self-managed spaces and institutional settings. Empirical evidence from the two cases suggests that, during the crisis decade, Direct Social Action has played a relevant role in the pathways of social centers’ influence over institutional politics at the local level, prompting distinct relational dynamics in the interplay between collective actors, their broader environment, society at large, and institutional actors. Contributing to the research on the contentious practices of DSA in the Italian context of the crisis, the dissertation uncovers how the structuring, in the societal fabric, of material, territorial and identity responses can translate into an institutional impact, as collective actors intercept the dynamics of representative political competition. At the same time, evidence highlights the relationship between the ways in which practices are mobilized within arenas of interaction, and their role in fostering the political influence of movement actors. Specifically, the analysis underscores the efficacy of DSAs in contributing to trajectories of high political influence, for collective actors that deploy this form of action within a bridging of their social environment.

Direct social actions and political influence. Social centers at times of crisis in Bologna and Naples / Desiata, Eleonora. - (2022 Jun 13).

Direct social actions and political influence. Social centers at times of crisis in Bologna and Naples

DESIATA, Eleonora
2022

Abstract

This dissertation investigates how, since the burst of the 2008 crisis, self-managed social centers adopting Direct Social Actions (DSAs) have shaped political influence at the municipal level. A rich bulk of social sciences scholarship has addressed the political and social dimensions of the crisis, discussing, on the one hand, the transformation of the repertoires of collective engagement, and, on the other hand, the outcomes of specific collective mobilizations, such as anti-austerity protests. However, a systematic reflection on how the use of different forms of action relates to movement consequences, and particularly to political outcomes, is overall missing from the literature. This is especially the case for those modes of collective action, such as DSAs, that are contentious in nature, but cannot be ascribed to the categories of demonstrative and of conventional action. Adopting a relational research approach, the dissertation employs the causal explanation method of process-tracing, to retrace the sequences of interlocking dynamics through which the pathways of political influence of social centers have unfolded during the decade. In doing so, it offers a framework for analyzing the political influence of collective actors, encompassing three dimensions of change: institutional attitudes, procedural access, and policy. The empirical analysis focuses on two Italian city cases, Bologna and Naples, and is based, on the one hand, on semi-structured in-depth interviews conducted with social centers’ activists, local elected officials, and key informants. On the other hand, gathered sources include a set of local press articles (2005-2019), materials produced by collective actors themselves, press releases, and municipal institutional documents (including policy and administrative acts, transcripts, and reports). The interviews and document analysis have been integrated with fieldnotes from local self-managed spaces and institutional settings. Empirical evidence from the two cases suggests that, during the crisis decade, Direct Social Action has played a relevant role in the pathways of social centers’ influence over institutional politics at the local level, prompting distinct relational dynamics in the interplay between collective actors, their broader environment, society at large, and institutional actors. Contributing to the research on the contentious practices of DSA in the Italian context of the crisis, the dissertation uncovers how the structuring, in the societal fabric, of material, territorial and identity responses can translate into an institutional impact, as collective actors intercept the dynamics of representative political competition. At the same time, evidence highlights the relationship between the ways in which practices are mobilized within arenas of interaction, and their role in fostering the political influence of movement actors. Specifically, the analysis underscores the efficacy of DSAs in contributing to trajectories of high political influence, for collective actors that deploy this form of action within a bridging of their social environment.
Settore SPS/11 - Sociologia dei Fenomeni Politici
Scienza politica e sociologia
BOSI, Lorenzo
ZAMPONI, LORENZO
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11384/125342
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