Making Democracy Work
Civic Traditions in Modern Italy
Robert D. Putnam

With Robert Leonardi and Raffaella Y. Nanetti


Why do some democratic governments succeed and others fail? In a book that has received attention from policymakers and civic activists in America and around the world, Robert Putnam and his collaborators offer empirical evidence for the importance of "civic community" in developing successful institutions. Their focus is on a unique experiment begun in 1970 when Italy created new governments for each of its regions. After spending two decades analyzing the efficacy of these governments in such fields as agriculture, housing, and health services, they reveal patterns of associationism, trust, and cooperation that facilitate good governance and economic prosperity.

Robert D. Putnam is Dillon Professor of International Affairs and Director of the Center for International Affairs at Harvard University. His many books include Hanging Together: The Seven-Power Summits (Harvard). Robert Leonardi is Jean Monnet Lecturer in European Community Politics at the London School of Economics, and Raffaella Y. Nanetti is Professor of Urban Planning and Policy Analysis at the University of Illinois at Chicago.