Meritocracy, Growth, and Lessons from Italy's Economic Decline

Hosted by the European Institute

Online and in-person public event (LSE Lecture Theatre, Centre Building)


Lorenzo Codogno

Lorenzo Codogno

Giampaolo Galli

Giampaolo Galli

Angelo Martelli

Angelo Martelli

Alberto Mingardi

Alberto Mingardi

Leila Simona Talani

Leila Simona Talani


Iain Begg

Iain Begg

Join us for the launch of Lorenzo Codogno and Giampaolo Galli's new book Meritocracy, Growth, and Lessons from Italy’s Economic Decline: Lobbies (and Ideologies) Against Competition and Talent.

Italy experienced an economic miracle after the Second World War, and it is still an advanced economy and a member of the G7. Until the 1960s it seemed destined to catch up with the best-performing countries. Then the growth engine stopped, its debt skyrocketed, and Italy became a weaker member of the Eurozone. This book draws lessons on the importance of meritocracy for economic growth and uses international comparisons on social capital, governance, the role of the public sector, efficiency of the judiciary, education, gender and social inequality, social mobility, corporate standards, financial structures, and more to evaluate Italy's economic performance. It argues that the arrogance of mediocracy is more damaging than that of meritocracy.

More about our speaker and chair

Lorenzo Codogno (@lorenzocodogno) is a Visiting Professor in Practice at the LSE European Institute. Since 2015, he has been the founder and chief economist of his consulting vehicle, Lorenzo Codogno Macro Advisors Ltd, and Senior Fellow of the LUISS School of European Political Economy in Rome. Prior to joining LSE, he was chief economist and director general at the Treasury Department of the Italian Ministry of Economy and Finance (May 2006-February 2015).

Giampaolo Galli (@GiampaoloGalli) is an Italian economist and politician. He has also been lecturer at the Bocconi University of Milan , La Sapienza University of Rome and the Luiss-Guido Carli University of Rome. He is the author of numerous articles in newspapers and scientific journals. He is also Senior Fellow of the LUISS School of European Political Economy (LUISS-SEP).

Angelo Martelli (@angelo_martelli) is Assistant Professor in European and International Political Economy at the LSE European Institute. He worked as a Consultant for the Jobs Group of the World Bank, as a Policy Fellow for the Open Innovation Team of the UK Cabinet Office and HM Treasury and as a Technical Expert for the IMF.

Alberto Mingardi (@amingardi) is director general of Istituto Bruno Leoni, Italy’s free‐​market think tank that he helped to establish in 2004. Mingardi authored several commentaries and books, including Herbert Spencer (New York & London: Continuum, 2011) and Antonio Rosmini, The Constitution Under Social Justice (Lexington Books, 2003).

Leila Simona Talani (@leilasimona) has been Professor of International Political Economy in the Department of European and International Studies, King's College London since 2014. She became editor of the Palgrave series on the Politics of Migration and Citizenship in 2020. In 2022 she founded the Centre for Italian Politics@EIS of which she is the director.

Iain Begg (@IainBeggLSE) is a Professorial Research Fellow at the LSE European Institute. His main research work is on the political economy of European integration and EU economic governance. He has published extensively and served as co-editor of the Journal of Common Market Studies, the leading academic journal focusing on the study of European integration, from 1998 to 2003.

More about this event

The European Institute (@LSEEI) is a centre for research and graduate teaching on the processes of integration and fragmentation within Europe.

You can purchase a copy of Meritocracy, Growth, and Lessons from Italy's Economic Decline from LSE's official independent bookshop, Pages of Hackney.

Twitter Hashtag: #LSEEI

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