Academics are often accused of being secluded in their “ivory towers”, focused on research and teaching but uninterested in, or unable to engage with, the public debate. If this is actually the case, under what conditions and at what particular moment is this likely to change? Following on three relevant dimensions—the visibility of political scientists, their partisanship and their impact in the public sphere—and combining press analysis with original survey data, this article has two main aims: frst, to assess Italian political scientists’ (IPSs) social relevance in a period of huge political and institutional confict such as the constitutional referendum held in December 2016; second, to explore the potential factors leading IPSs to be more or less present in the public debate. For the former, we focus on the public visibility of IPSs during the referendum campaign, as well as on the content of their public interventions, both concerning their neutral/partisan stance and their attitudes towards the constitutional reform. For the latter, we empirically test a few personal and institutional factors that are likely to infuence individuals’ participation in the referendum debate.

Down from the “Ivory Tower”? Not so much… Italian political scientists and the constitutional referendum campaign

PRITONI Andrea
2021-01-01

Abstract

Academics are often accused of being secluded in their “ivory towers”, focused on research and teaching but uninterested in, or unable to engage with, the public debate. If this is actually the case, under what conditions and at what particular moment is this likely to change? Following on three relevant dimensions—the visibility of political scientists, their partisanship and their impact in the public sphere—and combining press analysis with original survey data, this article has two main aims: frst, to assess Italian political scientists’ (IPSs) social relevance in a period of huge political and institutional confict such as the constitutional referendum held in December 2016; second, to explore the potential factors leading IPSs to be more or less present in the public debate. For the former, we focus on the public visibility of IPSs during the referendum campaign, as well as on the content of their public interventions, both concerning their neutral/partisan stance and their attitudes towards the constitutional reform. For the latter, we empirically test a few personal and institutional factors that are likely to infuence individuals’ participation in the referendum debate.
2021
1
20
Constitutional referendum; impact; Italy; partisanship; political scientists; public visibility; social relevance
VICENTINI Giulia; PRITONI Andrea
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2318/1794848
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