Political Economy: Sweden Vs. Italy

While Sweden and Italy share multiple characteristics, such as political democracy, relative territorial proximity, and similar traits, the political economies contrast on various levels. It can be attributed to the fact that Sweden is an example of classic corporatism. Thus, different corporate groups form associations that can then advocate and collectively achieve professional, legislative, and social goals (Bale, 2017). Moreover, as the initiatives are supported by the government, the divisions have power over major economic processes within the country. Coordinated strikes, protests, and demands of change to facilitate better economic conditions and hinder corruption. On the other hand, the Italian system is based on resilient clientelism, implying individual and voluntary advocacy and effort towards change. Such a framework is accompanied by patterns of corruption as a lack of collective force that can drive reforms allows employers to wither impact the political agenda or ignore it for their benefit.

The two cases help prove the existence of a core and a periphery. The core, hence, Sweden is a country where the political economy is transparent and socially oriented. Italy, on the other hand, as a representative of Southern Europe, is illustrated through a lack of opportunities for a collective force to majorly influence certain national processes. The two countries are examples of differences in approaches to power, and the system that correlates with more beneficial results is the one in which individuals are able to form a collective alliance.

As corporations are constantly developing and a lack of solid unions may be maximized through national efforts, Italy’s political economy may suffer in the future. Moreover, since patterns of corruption correlate with the existing resilient clientelism, individual power may become redundant. Hence, workers may be harmed through corporate ideas such as reducing costs and increasing profit, which can lead to major downfalls from a social and economic perspective.


Bale, T. (2017). European Politics: A Comparative Introduction. Bloomsbury Publishing.