Renzi’s defeat is not another victory of populism

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Series Details 8 December 2016
Publication Date 08/12/2016
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From a distance, the recent decision by Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi to resign after suffering a loss in a referendum on a proposed ambitious constitutional reform might look like another sign of the wave of populism and ‘anti-system’ sentiment that led to the Brexit vote in June and the election of Donald Trump as the new US President in November.

A closer look, however, reveals that the Italian situation is more peculiar and should neither be assimilated to these earlier events, nor taken as an early warning of the possible rise of populist parties in upcoming elections in other European countries such as France, Germany and the Netherlands.

Likewise, the results of the Austrian elections confirm that there seems to be no ‘Trump effect’ on Europe for now.

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